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  • Writer's pictureChristopher Johnson

Practical Solutions for PCOS

While it has long been associated with pain management, is it possible that acupuncture can help people living with PCOS?

Yes! Acupuncture and Traditional Chinese Medicine can treat the symptoms of PCOS, while also regulating the menstrual cycle.

PCOS is a condition that affects hormones, insulin resistance, and increases inflammation. Various modalities of Traditional Chinese Medicine help to address any underlying imbalances within the body and help to reduce systemic inflammation.

What is PCOS?

Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS) is the most common reproductive disorder and affects 5-10% of women. Additionally, PCOS is currently the leading cause of infertility in the United States. This chronic and common condition leads to menstrual irregularity, weight gain, and adrenal imbalance leading to hirsutism, or facial hair. With the onset of PCOS, there is an early excess of dehydroepiandrosterone sulfate (DHEAS), which causes early growth of axillary hair, acne, and body odor. Anovulation or dysfunction with ovulation is a common symptom leading to infertility, as well as an adrenal imbalance.

PCOS is usually diagnosed in puberty and symptoms intensify throughout time. Diagnostic criteria for PCOS require two out the following symptoms be present:

  • twelve or more follies on one ovary or increased ovary size

  •  hyperandrogenism (high levels of male hormones)

  • menstrual dysfunction

Although a diagnosis of PCOS does not mean that cysts are present on the ovaries, the condition gets its name due to many women having enlarged ovaries that appear to have small cysts on the outer edge.

Does TCM Help With PCOS?

If you haven't given it a try, I can understand how the thought of acupuncture can be daunting. I know that Traditional Chinese Medicine can be misunderstood: it's a little out of the ordinary and a patient may imagine many needles, an expensive treatment plan, and have some skepticism about what exactly TCM can help with.

Acupuncture and Chinese herbs are commonly used to regulate the endocrine system, helping to stabilize hormonal imbalances caused by PCOS. Acupuncture can also help to increase blood flow to the reproductive organs. Increased circulation to the reproductive organs can lead to increased egg health.

By helping to increase circulation and regulating the endocrine system, acupuncture can help to regulate the menstrual cycle and increase the likelihood of ovulation. For many women, this means an increased likelihood of conceiving naturally. In addition to treating PCOS, acupuncture has many other benefits that may increase natural fertility. Acupuncture can also help to decrease stress and anxiety. Research suggests that acupuncture releases endorphins, the body’s feel-good hormones, that can aid in stress reduction. Acupuncture can help regulate the nervous system, bringing the body out of the sympathetic “fight or flight” response and instead stimulate the body’s parasympathetic “rest and digest” response.

Chinese herbs can also be very effective in the treatment of PCOS, as they can help to regulate progesterone and estrogen levels and help to resume healthy ovulation and menstrual cycles.

Is Lifestyle Modification Important?

Absolutely! Lifestyle and dietary modifications are also important in the holistic treatment of PCOS. In addition to Traditional Chinese Medicine, individuals may find relief from a reduction in their sugar and simple carbohydrate intake, as these can contribute to insulin resistance. An increase in low-impact exercise can help improve blood flow and regulate hormonal imbalances, as well.

Contact Everybody Healing Center!

Everybody Healing Center uses a holistic, multifaceted approach encompassing acupuncture, herbal medicine, nutrition, and exercise. This method of treatment is thorough and results-driven.

Our time-tested treatments from Traditional Chinese Medicine balance hormones, stimulate the reproductive system, and enhance fertility. We practice Traditional Chinese Medicine in an integrated manner, working alongside consultants and using Western diagnostic approaches for well-rounded successful treatments.

If you have any questions about fertility support, including nutrition, don't hesitate to reach out! Schedule a consultation today!

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