Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome, or PCOS, is the most common condition we see at Brisbane Natural Health. Women with PCOS can present in a number of different ways, however, some of the more common issues associated with PCOS are…
- Irregular menstrual cycles – the time between periods getting longer or not coming at the same time each month
- Insulin resistance – which causes issues with blood sugar levels
- Weight gain
- Hirsutism – excessive hair growth
There are 4 main subtypes of PCOS that can occur, as well as there usually being some overlap between each main type.
- Insulin Resistant PCOS
- Androgen dominant PCOS
- Thyroid dysfunction PCOS
- Adrenal depleted PCOS
Insulin Resistant PCOS
In this type of PCOS, there is concurrent hormonal dysregulation and insulin resistance. Symptoms can include weight gain, craving sugar, frequent urination, thirstiness, and fatigue.
Androgen dominant PCOS
High testosterone and androgens cause symptoms like hirsutism (hair growth), acne and irregular cycles.
Thyroid dysfunction PCOS
In addition to irregular cycles thyroid function is low, leading to symptoms of hypothyroidism such as weight gain, foggy headedness, dry skin, anxiety and/or depression and low body temperature. Click here to read more about thyroid issues.
Adrenal depleted PCOS
Caused by excessive stress, adrenally depleted PCOS patients suffer from fatigue, insomnia and sometimes mood issues.
Why is the type of PCOS you have important?
PCOS varies widely in presentation, hormonal changes and also symptoms. When our naturopaths are assessing your entire health, they’re looking for what is specifically going on for you. That means there is no one magic pill for the treatment of PCOS, rather the success depends on treating your individual imbalances with specific natural medicines to correct the condition. If insulin resistance is an issue that is a focus. If you have high androgens then our naturopaths will address this.
Can natural therapies help with PCOS?
Yes! Both naturopathy and acupuncture are very effective in addressing the causes and imbalances that are causing your PCOS. At Brisbane Natural Health we have helped hundreds of women correct their PCOS permanently by supporting them to live a healthier lifestyle and providing treatments that target the underlying causes.
How does naturopathy work for PCOS?
Our naturopaths help PCOS first by looking at your symptoms and pathology results to determine what the individual issues you face are. They then develop a tailored treatment plan which includes herbal medicines, nutritional supplements as well as specific dietary advice. Naturopathy is so effective for PCOS due to herbal medicines ability to regulate hormones, support your adrenal and thyroid health and to reduce insulin resistance.
How does acupuncture help PCOS?
Acupuncture helps to regulate the menstrual cycle and bring the body back into balance over time. It works by stimulating specific acupuncture points on the body to facilitate change. This study found acupuncture to be effective in PCOS, helping to increase blood flow to the ovaries, reduced ovarian volume, reduced number of cysts, improvements in insulin resistance and reduced cortisol levels.
Many of our patients also choose to do naturopathy and acupuncture concurrently. This is ideal if you need faster results, such as if you are treating your PCOS for fertility reasons and want to conceive as quickly as possible.
How long does it take to treat PCOS naturally?
Unfortunately, the natural treatment of PCOS is not a quick fix. Unlike the oral contraceptive pill, which works immediately (although this does not correct the issue, rather masks it), the herbal medicines and acupuncture take some time to correct the issue. For most of our clients, we have seen a significant improvement within 9-12 months, however, it can take 12-24 months to really correct the condition. The success, of course, depends on the severity of your condition, other concurrent issues that need to be addressed and what diet and lifestyle changes you’re prepared to make to make it work. Although PCOS is said to have no “cure” – we have observed that in many of our patients has been reversed, with many of our PCOS patients going on to have healthy babies after treatment.
What if I’m also trying to get pregnant and I have PCOS?
If you’re trying to conceive then your treatment may vary slightly to take this into account. We may prescribe nutrients to support your pregnancy in addition to your regular supplements. As we correct the underlying causes of PCOS your fertility will increase anyway, but there are some other considerations that we make if trying to get pregnant is your goal.
To make an appointment with a naturopath or acupuncturist at Brisbane Natural Health to help with PCOS, call us on 07 3367 0337 or book online now.
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