Hormonal birth control (HBC) is a bandaid for symptoms associated with PCOS. This is because HBC is not a treatment for PCOS, it just masks the symptoms.
If you’re on HBC to manage your PCOS symptoms, this is not an indictment! But it is important to know what’s actually happening and how it works.
Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) is a term that is used to describe a group of symptoms – it is not a disease or a *reason* for symptoms. It is the NAME of the symptoms.
PCOS symtoms can look like:
🚩 Menstrual irregularities
🚩 Absent flow
🚩 Heavy flow
🚩 Hair loss
🚩 Estrogen dominance
🚩 Weight irregularities
But finding out I have PCOS is like taking my car in the shop because it won’t start and the mechanic telling me it won’t turn on – Like duh? But WHY??
PCOS can have a few different root causes. What this means is that symptoms of PCOS are a result of the issue at hand.
There are 4 different types of PCOS…
This is the most common type of PCOS and it means that insulin levels in the body are too high. The best way to test for it is with a fasting insulin test
This occurs when there’s a surge in androgens after getting off of certain types of HBC’s. Before considering post-pill PCOS, it is important to rule out insulin-resistant PCOS first and also consider when you got off of HBC and what your hormones were like prior to that.
Chronic inflammation can stimulate an overproduction of testosterone. We’re looking for both symptoms of PCOS and inflammationWe can test for levels of inflammation in the body through labs and before considering inflammatory PCOS, we want to rule out insulin-resistant PCOS and post-pill PCOS.
Elevated DHEAS can be a sign of Adrenal PCOS. We also want to make sure we’ve ruled out insulin-resistance, post-pill PCOS, and inflammatory PCOS prior to considering Adrenal PCOS.
Hormonal birth control is a common treatment option for PCOS – but I’m actually not a fan of it.
Hormonal birth control may give us a withdrawal bleed or manage acne, but it does NOT solve the actual issues that are generally rooted in inflammation, and/ or blood sugar.
My take is that when addressing symptoms of PCOS, we are still doing all the things we would normally do to support and nourish hormones and we’re doing them consistently:
There may be a few tweaks and/ or specifics depending on the root cause, such as post-pill PCOS may want to follow an HBC detox protocol – but the meat and potatoes are still the same.
If you have PCOS & are ready to ditch HBC, here’s your reminder that there are effective alternative treatment options for PCOS!
PCOS symptoms are something that clients have addressed naturally in Hormone Bootcamp!
Hormone Bootcamp gives the tools needed to help eliminate symptoms of PCOS in a way that feels easy and is sustainable!
Enroll now >> Hormone Bootcamp!
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Calee Shea is a Holistic Health Practioner based in Atlanta, Georgia. She is your go-to gal for all things periods, vaginal health, and sex.