Dr. Alicia Pearse
- BHSc (Acu) 2010
- Adv TCM Studies, China 2010
- AHPRA: CMR0001731654
- AACMA: 3602
Poly-cystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS)
PCOS is a complex gynaecological condition associated with painful periods, irregular cycles, hormone imbalance, weight gain, acne and reduced fertility. There are three medical criteria for PCOS: cysts on the ovaries, elevated androgen levels, and irregular menstrual cycles; with the presence of two being enough to confirm diagnosis.
Many women experience years of complications due to the misconception that periods are typically difficult and painful, when in fact this is our body’s signal to us that something is wrong. It is considered that over a fifth of all reproductive aged women may have PCOS with majority of those being undiagnosed.
Do you have PCOS, or suspect that you may? Do you want to know more about managing your symptoms? Book a Gynaecological Acupuncture Appointment to speak with Dr Alicia Pearse and learn your TCM diagnosis as well as develop a management plan for long term lifestyle improvements.
If you have a gynaecological concern the following information is what I recommend to many clients as “homework” (or lifestyle advice) to lay the groundwork for continuous progress with their condition.
You might notice that most of these suggestions are focused on restoring and maintaining the warmth of the body; due to our Summer lifestyles, we love literally chilling out at every opportunity. Air conditioning, bare feet, minimal clothing, swimming, iced drinks and salads have become mainstays in our lives; but we have to be mindful of when they become taxing on our health. Try cooling down, rather than chilling out!
So simple; just avoid bare feet on cold, hard floors. Keeping the feet and ankles warm protects the acupuncture meridians in the feet from contracting Coldness; which can then transported up the legs and into the abdomen. Coldness causes contraction of muscles and vessels which inhibits circulation. It also increases the perception of pain; just think of how much more it hurts when you kick your toe and your feet are cold!
Use a Heat Pack or Hot Water Bottle
Another great way to increase warmth in the abdomen. Improve Blood and Qi circulation by softening tension in the muscles and organs of the abdomen. A heat pack on the lower back or tummy isn’t just an old wives’ tale (though maybe those old wives were onto something!)
Avoid Icy Drinks
Room temperature water or good quality tea (my personal favourite) are better options than that iced latte, smoothie or soft drink. Cold liquids enter our stomach and damage our digestive fire; this in turn leads to poor metabolism, restricted circulation in the organs, and limits our organs’ ability to do their job. Perhaps you’ve never noticed an issue with this; but when our body expresses disharmony, and the female body will often tell us via the menstrual cycle, this is an easy adjustment to make to give it more support while healing.
Re-Usable Menstrual Products (RUMPs) are a wonderful opportunity for women to connect with their period and break the programmed hate that we have with the whole experience. Using a menstrual cup or reusable cloth pads helps us shift out of our “yucky, throw it in the bin” mentality that is fostered with the use of disposable tampons and pads. Not only do we remove our unconscious ecological guilt; we learn how to clearly observe our body’s functions and changes, in turn moving from confusion and frustration into understanding and empowerment.