Updated: Jan 10
What is PCOS?
PCOS has recently become a significant concern for the majority of women across the globe. Though the main cause is still unknown, it is associated with factors such as insulin resistance, poor diet, stress, obesity, overuse of birth control pills, etc, which together result in hormonal imbalances. So what is PCOS? PCOS or Polycystic ovary syndrome is a chronic medical condition that stays lifelong. A fertile woman develops PCOS when her body witnesses an abnormal rise in levels of male hormones namely androgen and testosterone. When there are high levels of male hormones in a woman’s body, ovulation gets hampered. Instead of eggs maturing and releasing during ovulation, they turn into small cysts which build up in the ovaries. As a result, women suffering from PCOS undergo several physical and psychological changes.
PCOS is a serious condition that can grow worse over time. If left untreated, it can give rise to serious medical complications such as uterine cancer and permanent infertility. Handling PCOS is troublesome on your own so you should seek help from professional medical experts. Even though PCOS cannot be fully treated, the negative effects on your health can be greatly reduced with the help of a PCOS programme. Gynecologists, dietitians, dermatologists, and endocrinologists work together in a PCOS programme to treat you in the best possible way. Also, they suggest dietary and lifestyle changes which should be followed with discipline. Just make sure that you seek medical help when you start noticing PCOS symptoms, which will be discussed in this article.
Women’s Health Issues
The main problem that most women with PCOS encounter is infertility. PCOS also causes heavy periods, irregular menstrual cycles, facial hair, acne, pelvic pain, hyperinsulinemia, and depression. Fertile women of age 18–35 are the most exposed to PCOS risks. Apart from physical health effects, PCOS also affects a woman’s mental health to a great extent.
Well, the exact cause of the condition is still unknown but factors such as obesity, inflammation, and insulin resistance come into play. If you have obesity and a family history of PCOS then also there is a high chance that you’ll develop the condition.
Symptoms of PCOS
Not everyone will experience the same kind of symptoms when they have PCOS disease. It varies depending on a woman’s body. These are some common symptoms:
High levels of androgen and testosterone
Menstrual cycles are either short or too long
Heavy flow during periods
Balding of hair
Acne and breakouts
Dark skin around neck and armpits
The best course of action for PCOS involves early diagnosis and a PCOS program to help treat the condition. Depending on the level of the condition, every woman receives a different PCOS treatment to balance their hormone levels. You must know that there is no permanent cure for PCOS. It can only be controlled and managed with a healthy lifestyle, certain medications, and dietary changes. These lifestyle changes will help you in PCOS treatment on a better note:
Controlling Stress Levels
Stress is thought to contribute to PCOS's progression. Make an effort to schedule relaxation and self-care into your schedule. You can practice yoga or meditation, spend time outdoors and get fresh air, and spend time with friends and family.
Obesity is one of the leading causes of PCOS so try to lose weight. Keeping your weight in check is essential as it raises your risk of developing other conditions like diabetes, heart disease, and other metabolic syndromes. Also, try to follow up with an exercise routine daily. Losing 5-10% of the weight is enough. Just be consistent in your exercise regime and don’t eat unhealthy food.
Get Proper Sleep
The majority of PCOS patients have sleep problems or insomnia. Your stress levels are impacted by irregular sleep, which leads to hormonal imbalances. Aim for a good night's sleep of at least 7–9 hours for healthy physical and mental well-being. Create a regular bedtime schedule and make an effort to follow it.
To combat PCOS, you must eat healthy food because proper nutrition will help to balance your hormones and regulate your cycle. Instead of eating large, infrequent meals, try eating smaller meals more frequently.
Foods to eat:
High fiber content fruits
Foods to avoid:
Additional Risks Associated with PCOS
Women with PCOS run at higher risks of developing these medical conditions:
Type 2 diabetes
High blood pressure
What is PCOD Problem?
A lot of people get confused that PCOS and PCOD are the same. No, they aren’t, PCOD stands for Polycystic Ovarian Disease. Every month, a woman's ovaries release eggs and small amounts of androgens are also produced during the process. In PCOD, the ovaries frequently release immature or partially-mature eggs, which eventually develop into cysts. Whereas, in PCOS, the ovaries produce abnormal amounts of androgen which prevents the eggs from developing and releasing normally.
PCOD does not affect the fertility of women in most cases and can be treated with proper care. It's crucial to keep in mind that treating PCOD requires both medication and lifestyle adjustments to lead a healthy life. Just like PCOS, PCOD also has no permanent cure. Maintain a positive outlook and stay in touch with your doctors. Although PCOD increases the risk of miscarriage and causes hormonal imbalances, some women with PCOD are still able to conceive with proper medical care. PCOD and PCOS programs encourage ovulation through regular hormone evaluations, medication, and treatment from skilled professionals.
Every year, millions of women get symptoms and treatment for PCOD & PCOS worldwide. In order to prevent and treat hormonal disturbances and conditions, every woman must focus on maintaining good health. The best course of action for PCOD and PCOS involves early diagnosis and the right method to help treat the condition. It is not difficult to lead a normal life with PCOS and PCOD if you have guidance from the best professional experts and self-discipline.