PCOS and Mental Health

For the nearly thirty percent of American women who struggle with Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS), one of the largest sources of frustration can come from feeling as though the only symptom being treated is the absence of periods. In fact, many women complain that only the physical symptoms of PCOS are the focus of treatment while mental health is often ignored. These frustrations are validated by a growing body of research examining the correlation between PCOS and mental health.

Anxiety

For women with PCOS, anxiety is one common mental health concern. Studies suggest that abnormally high levels of testosterone production in the body can result in anxiety. Women with PCOS can also develop anxiety as a result of some of the symptoms associated with PCOS such as hair loss and hirtuism (excessive body hair).

Depression

In a manner similar to anxiety, PCOS can also lead to depression due to the distress caused by many of the symptoms of PCOS. Some studies have revealed that women with PCOS report feeling hopelessness, despair, and feelings of having a poorer quality of life compared to their counterparts who do not have PCOS. Women with PCOS are also at a much higher risk for suicide than women without PCOS.

Eating Disorders

Research suggests that there is indeed a correlation between PCOS and eating disorders, but there is often a disagreement as to whether PCOS is the cause of eating disorders or if those who struggle with eating disorders will go on to develop PCOS later in life. With weight gain being one of the most common symptoms, it is not unusual for a woman with PCOS to develop low-self-esteem or an unhealthy body image. For women with PCOS, it is especially important to find body-positive role models to help promote a healthier body image.

For many women, knowing that treating fertility issues does not need to be the focus of PCOS treatment can be sobering news. Studies show that a healthy, balanced diet and exercise can drastically relieve many of the physical emotional symptoms associated with PCOS. While a healthy lifestyle is by no means a magic pill or a universal answer, making healthy choices can go a long way in reducing stressful emotional symptoms associated with PCOS.

For more information, or to seek out additional support, please visit soulcysters.net

Sources:

PCOS.com

https://www.pcos.com/pcos-and-emotional-mental-disorders/

Anthony Rivas, Medical Daily

http://www.medicaldaily.com/womens-health-pcos-diagnoses-double-chances-being-hospitalized-mental-chronic-illness-319572

Columbia University

http://nursing.columbia.edu/psychiatric-complications-women-polycystic-ovary-syndrome-most-often-linked-menstrual-irregularities

By Becky Ruhter

Posted on November 9, 2015 and filed under awareness.

New office location in Pine Junction

I've moved again!  I am now in a roomy and cozy office, with a view!, in Pine Junction.  Don't worry, I still have a location in Conifer too! This way, I am accessible to multiple towns along the 285 corridor.  I am so excited, this is a great move and my clients seem to really like it too.  Check out some pictures of my new digs...and of me enjoying it too ;) 

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woohoo! I'm official

woohoo! I'm official

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Eating Disorder Resources by Becky Ruhter

 

Getting help recovering from an eating disorder is a difficult process. In addition to professional treatment, some people recovering from an eating disorder may wish to seek additional support. Other times, the family members or friends of someone recovering from an eating disorder may feel confused and unsure of how to help their loved one. There is a plethora of information on eating disorders that exists both in print and online. Unfortunately, some of that information may be triggering, misguided, or simply unhelpful. Fortunately, not all of the information on eating disorders consists of glamorizing symptoms or boasting about dangerously low weights. Many helpful resources exist for people suffering from eating disorders and their loved ones to help them better navigate the world of recovery. 

Physical Services: 

The Eating Disorder Center of Denver

The Eating Disorder Center of Denver is a treatment center that focuses on empowering the client and helping them discover their identity beyond their eating disorder. They not only offer treatment to individuals with eating disorders, but they also provide resources for families as well. The organization’s blog also contains informative articles on eating disorders. 

http://www.edcdenver.com/

The Eating Disorder Foundation

The Eating Disorder Foundation is a nonprofit organization that aims to eliminate eating disorders through education, advocacy, and support. They also assist those who may be struggling with an eating disorder and provide services such as drop-in support, support groups, and directories for professional treatment. Their website includes information about eating disorders as well as links to helpful resources. 

http://eatingdisorderfoundation.org/

Websites:

National Eating Disorders Association

NEDA is a non-profit organization created with the mission of educating communities about eating disorders as well as providing support to eating disorder patients and their families. The organization’s helpline operates five days a week to assist those seeking treatment resources. The website’s blog lists local and national NEDA events as well as advice to those in recovery and family members who wish to help a loved one with an eating disorder. 

http://www.nationaleatingdisorders.org/

We Bite Back

Some people may prefer the anonymity of an online support group. Founded in 2006, We Bite Back was created with the intention of offering online support to people with any eating disorder at any stage of recovery. 

http://www.webiteback.com/

Recovery Warriors

Recovery Warriors initially began with the development of the Rise Up + Recover app as a tracking tool to be used by anyone in the early stages of recovery. With the app, the user can track their food intake and record any thoughts they may be having. They can also make a record of any time they perform a behavior associated with eating disorders and record the thoughts and feelings that may have triggered the behavior. Due to the success of the app, the developer, Jessica Raymond, created a podcast and website devoted to educating people about eating disorders and providing inspiration and resources to those in recovery. 

https://www.recoverywarriors.com/

Books:

Goodbye ED, Hello Me by Jenni Schaefer

In this memoir, Jenni Schaefer details her journey to finding freedom from her eating disorder (referred by her as “Ed”) by providing not only a personal account of her recovery success, but by also imparting practical advice for those looking to begin their own journey. Schaefer’s advice and encouragement inspires readers to set themselves free from destructive behaviors with food and to fall in love again with life.  

Don’t Diet, Live It by Andrea Wachter and Marsea Marcus

This workbook, created by two licensed therapists who have also recovered from their own struggles with food and weight, is designed to help those in the early stages of recovery challenge maladaptive beliefs about food and weight. Each chapter focuses on a specific lesson that is important to recovery (for example, learning how to think in multiple options as opposed to black and white, learning how to set healthy boundaries whether they happen to be with food or with other people, and challenging the notion that happiness can be obtained with outer solutions rather than looking inward). At the end of each chapter, the reader is encouraged to answer thought-provoking questions that can help inspire the reader to develop new behaviors and thought patterns. 

 

Posted on October 5, 2015 and filed under awareness.