We must have, for once in our lifetime, have heard people throwing the term PCOS very casually. But, what does it mean? Is it just missing your periods or unmanageable weight gain? Let’s unpack.
This blog is an interesting attempt to understand this health condition from scratch, its symptoms and treatment options.
Let us first start with briefly defining it.
PCOS stands for polycystic ovary syndrome that affects 8-13% of women that fall in the reproductive age. Reproductive age is 15-49 categorically. Research also suggests that 70% of women are globally unaware of this condition entirely. It is, thus, a most commonly occurring hormonal condition that remains undiagnosed in most cases.
PCOS can take many forms such as a) Irregular periods b) Irregular ovulation time which remains to be a leading cause of infertility in women. While this majorly affects physical and biological health, it also seeps into the emotional wellbeing of most women causing anxiety, depression, mood changes and negative body image affecting overall self-esteem and confidence.
This is a public health concern that affects the majority of women. It is a chronic condition that does not have a complete cure. However the symptoms can be managed by integrating a thorough medical schedule and some important lifestyle changes.
Symptoms of PCOS may vary from person to person. Some might experience one symptom very severely. Others might have multiple symptoms together. Some of the common ones are listed below:
- Irregular periods
- Severe menstrual cramps
- Hair thinning or baldness
- Thick facial hair
- Acne breakouts and oily skin
- Weight gain
- Cyst in ovaries
People suffering from PCOS are also likely to develop chronic conditions like:
- High cholesterol
- Type 2 diabetes
- High blood pressure
This is a chronic condition that stays with you. However, targeted treatments for PCOS aim to manage symptoms that accompany it. It is necessary to take the required steps to mitigate risks of long term complications like high sugar levels and other heart diseases.
Some of the treatment options include;
- Regular physical activity can effectively help manage weight gain.
- A balanced diet is helpful to maintain weight and other chronic issues like sugar levels.
- Hormonal imbalances or irregular periods can be catered with prescribed medications.
- Fertility medicines are often advised when couples are trying to conceive.
When to Consult a Doctor?
PCOS is a highly individual medical condition. It is different in every case; from symptoms to treatment options your body might react well to.
It is always better to have a doctor in contact for managing symptoms correctly and finding the right medical options for your particular health concern.