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While smoking is unhealthy for everyone, it is particularly prohibited for those suffering from polycystic ovary syndrome or PCOS. This is a condition, wherein a woman’s body produces an excessive amount of male hormones – androgens. It is the formation of several “poly” cysts in the ovaries that causes an imbalance in sex hormones, apart from irregularities in the menstrual cycle and problems in ovulation.
A common condition in women, PCOS does not have any cure but can be managed through certain lifestyle choices. And that means it’s time to give up on smoking! Why may you ask? It is because that cigarette butt can make your symptoms even worse!
What are the symptoms of PCOS?
Those who suffer from PCOS have a range of symptoms, because it varies from woman to woman! For some, the symptoms are highly noticeable and cause pain, while for others they barely show up.
One of the most common symptoms seen in PCOS patients is anovulation. It occurs when your ovaries fail to release an egg, which is essential in case you want to conceive. While it is invisible in itself, it triggers other symptoms in the body. That’s why birth control pills are often prescribed to control anovulation and irregular periods.
However, if you take birth control pills and also smoke, you are at a high risk of heart disease, and can also suffer from blood clots. How is it related? Studies suggest that smoking is associated with increased adrenal responsiveness, decreased prolactin levels and higher lipid profile in women suffering from PCOS. This implies that smoking has an adverse effect on your heart, nervous system, and sexual gratification, to mention a few.
Can quitting smoking help ease PCOS?
Let’s not forget that smoking is highly addictive. The first challenge is to try and quit the habit to move towards a healthier lifestyle.
When cholesterol, calcium, and a few other substances accumulate on the walls of your arteries, it causes atherosclerosis. This plaque builds up and causes harm in the form of blood clots, heart attacks, and stroke. And a reduction in blood flow can even cause gangrene, if not addressed on time!
Plus cigarettes can lead to a rise in blood pressure and cholesterol, and both together can cause atherosclerosis. Yes, smoking decreases the levels of “good” cholesterol (high-density lipoprotein cholesterol) in the body, and increases “bad” cholesterol (low-density lipoprotein cholesterol) levels, and it’s not a good sign at all!
Plus, the by-products of smoking — nicotine and carbon monoxide can cause severe damage to the endothelium, the thin membrane that lines the inside of the heart and blood vessels.
We’ve got you enough reasons to quit smoking, isn’t it? Say goodbye to cigarettes and manage PCOS like never before!