Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) is the most common cause of female infertility and is thought to affect about one in ten women of childbearing age. It can manifest itself by way of reduced ovulation patterns, a higher-than-average rate of male hormones or by the presence of small cysts on the ovaries.
The exact cause isn’t clear and while it can be managed, there isn’t a cure. Its symptoms can include increased bodily hair growth; acne and oily skin; weight gain or obesity; skin tags; pelvic pain and painful ovulation and anxiety.
Treatments include taking birth control pills; eating healthily and taking exercise and taking fertility medication or having surgery if you’re trying to become pregnant. The syndrome can be tested for by means of an ultrasound or scan or blood tests to establish the measure of certain hormones in your system. Many of those one-in-tens have high levels of the male hormone testosterone. Women with PCOS may be advised to also have tests for diabetes and high blood pressure levels as there is an associated increased risk of both.
As a hormonal teenager, hearing that you have PCOS can come as both a blow and a relief. At the time, I felt outcast but also as though I finally had an explanation for the physical and mental symptoms I’d been experiencing. There’s no point denying, it doesn’t sound joyous. Yet with some adjustments it can be managed and prevented from inflicting on your daily life.
It’s a pity that more is not heard of these methods; PCOS seems to me as though the silent syndrome. From chatting with friends and people I’ve come in contact with over the past few years, lots have received a similar diagnosis and gone through similar experiences. PCOS affects different people in different ways, however, while one might have battled with their weight, unwanted hair growth would have been a more prominent issue for another.
Taking care of yourself and how you eat, feel and exercise can go a long way. Personally, I found yoga a great antidote to anxiety which was likely brought on by the syndrome. Even if you’re stressed about other aspects, relaxing and reducing your heart rate can be both effective and enjoyable. I believe adopting a positive attitude can immediately improve your quality of life. Experiences are, after all, what you make them.
While the pill is a commonly-used treatment method, not every type suits everyone’s system so don’t be afraid to change if you don’t like the effect yours has on you. Talk to your doctor if you think you may have PCOS.
If you do have it, you don’t need to let it get you down: there are several helpful techniques out there and you don’t need to suffer in silence.