Treatment for PCOS normally starts with lifestyle changes like weight loss, diet, and exercise.
Losing just 5 to 10 per cent of your body weight can help regulate your menstrual cycle and improve PCOS symptoms. Weight loss can also gain cholesterol levels, lower insulin, and reduce heart disease and diabetes risks.
Any diet that assists you to lose weight can help your condition. However, some diets may have benefits over others.
Studies balancing diets for PCOS have found that low-carbohydrate diets are effective for both weight loss and lowering insulin levels. A low glycemic index (low-GI) food that gets most carbohydrates from fruits, vegetables, and whole grains helps control the menstrual cycle better than a regular weight loss diet.
A few studies have noticed that 30 minutes of moderate-intensity workout at least three days a week can help women with PCOS lose weight. Losing weight with exercise also develops ovulation and insulin levels.
Exercise is even more useful when combined with a healthy diet. Diet plus exercise aids you lose more weight than either intervention alone, and it lowers your risks for diabetes and heart disease.
There is some proof that acupuncture can help with improving PCOS, but more research is needed.
Common medical treatments
Birth control pills and other medicines can help control the menstrual cycle and treat PCOS symptoms like hair growth and acne.
Taking estrogen and progestin daily can restore a healthy hormone balance, regulate ovulation, relieve symptoms like excessive hair growth, and protect against endometrial cancer. These hormones befall in a pill, patch, or vaginal ring.
Metformin (Glucophage, Fortamet) is a medication used to treat type 2 diabetes. It also treats PCOS by increasing insulin levels. One study found that taking metformin while causing changes to diet and exercise improves weight loss, lowers blood sugar, and restores a normal menstrual cycle better than changes to diet and exercise alone.
Clomiphene (Clomid) is a productivity drug that can help women with PCOS get pregnant. However, it increases the chance for twins and other multiple births.
Hair removal medicines
A few remedies can help get rid of unwanted hair or stop it from growing. Eflornithine (Vaniqa) cream is a prescription pill that slows hair growth. Laser hair removal and electrolysis can get free of unwanted hair on your face and body.
Surgery can be a choice to grow fertility if other treatments don’t work. Ovarian drilling is a method that makes tiny holes in the ovary with a laser or thin heated needle to restore normal ovulation.
When to see a doctor
See your doctor if:
- You’ve fumbled periods and you’re not pregnant.
- You have signs of PCOS, such as hair growth on your face and body.
- You have indications of diabetes, such as excessive thirst or hunger, blurred vision, or unexplained weight loss.
If you have PCOS, plan frequent visits with your primary care doctor. You’ll need general tests to check for diabetes, high blood pressure, and other possible complications.
The bottom line
PCOS can intrude a woman’s menstrual cycles and make it difficult to get pregnant. High levels of male hormones also affect unwanted symptoms like hair growth on the face and body.
Lifestyle mediations are the first treatments doctors recommend for PCOS, and they often work well. Weight loss can treat PCOS symptoms and recover the odds of getting pregnant. Diet and aerobic workout are two effective ways to lose weight. Medicines are a substitute if lifestyle changes don’t work. Birth control pills and metformin can both restore more normal menstrual cycles and reduce PCOS symptoms.
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