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Imagine having such bad period pains, you find it hard to function in your day to day life.

Sounds awful, right? Now imagine this happening to you for three years with the only resolution being surgery.

That’s what soap star and ex-Coronation street actress Sacha Parkinson has endured as she’s struggled with endometriosis.

And she’s far from the only woman suffering—rather, one of 1.5 million women in the UK alone have the condition—which is what she’s aiming to raise awareness of in a candid post on her Instagram page.

Sharing two images of herself in hospital, she opens up and asks others to start talking about the ‘invisible condition’, saying: ‘Listen to your body, help others listen to theirs and help create a wider awareness.’

 

Hey! Ever heard of endometriosis?! Well March is Endometriosis awareness month so here’s my story! (Re: photos) In April of last year I had surgery to remove endo cysts from inside both of my ovaries, that had taken up the entire space! Along with endo spots from around my womb. My surgery, though small in comparison to others, changed my life massively. – I had excruciating period pains growing up, often resulting in me taking days off school. I had constant lower back pain and for the last 3 years, a constant dull ache that felt like I had period pains every single day. My anxiety was through the roof, I was always fatigue, I found I was irritable for no reason and it hurt to have intercourse. Yeah, I said it, SEX! Which come on, really fucking sucks! I wondered if it was all in my mind and I’m certain my partner at the time thought so too, until I was diagnosed. After surgery and the recovery process, I felt like a completely new person! You don’t realise at the time how much the constant aches and feeling drained can strip elements of your personality. – Unfortunately I have been experiencing similar pains and changes in my body as of late. Flare ups, changes in my energy again and pains in my ovaries. I was always made aware that my cysts would most likely return but I didn’t think It would be quite so soon. I’ve got my fingers and toes crossed that they haven’t! – I have been familiar with Endometriosis since being a child. Sadly my beautiful, amazing momma had to have a hysterectomy at just 24 YEARS OF AGE!! Can you believe that?! Fortunately she already had me! (Though she may say unfortunately) My mum had no choice but to have surgery as it had been undiagnosed for years and her condition became too severe. I’m saddened every day for her but THIS IS WHY WE NEED TO SPREAD THE WORD! IT’S AN INVISIBLE CONDITION BUT IT IS VERY MUCH A REAL ONE! – 1 in 10 women suffer with Endometriosis. You may have it and not even know! Go educate yourself and spread your knowledge! Listen to your body! Help others listen to theirs! And help create a wider awareness @theendo.co #1in10 #endometriosis #endometriosisawareness

A post shared by SACHA PARKINSON (@sachalparkinson) on

Feb 22, 2018 at 10:25am PST

She had surgery last year to counter its effects but shares in her post that even post-op, some of the cysts may be returning.

Wondering what endometriosis even is? It’s a condition whereby cells that are usually found in the lining of the womb are actually in other parts of the body. Each month, these cells break down and blees, but as they’re not contained within the womb, the blood has no way of leaving the body.

Parkinson played Sian Powers in Coronation Street between 2009 and 2011, but admits that during this time, she was experiencing ‘excrutiating period pains’.

Her fans were quick to praise her for bring more light to the under discussed condition, with one saying: “Just read your story… thank you so much for sharing! I had my laparoscopy in January and still recovering! We NEED more awareness on this awful condition.”

Ally Head is Junior Digital Writer at Women’s Health. Join me on Instagram: @allyyhead

If you’re curious about the condition yourself, read our guide to endometriosis or read up on the differences between endometriosis VS pcos. Visit a doctor if you think you may be suffering.

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