Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS)
The unwanted affects of PCOS
Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome or better known as PCOS is a term that we are hearing quite often during our consultations. Many of our clients that come to us concerned with excess facial hair growth are often diagnosed with PCOS by their physician.
PCOS is one of the most common endocrine disorders in reproductive age women. Women with PCOS often notice abnormal periods, acne, difficulty getting pregnant, or hirsutism -coarse, dark hair growth on the face and some areas of the body.
Like diabetes and cardiovascular disease, a long-recognised common feature of PCOS is insulin resistance and having high levels of insulin circulating in the blood (hyperinsulinemia). High levels can stimulate the production of androgens, which then bring about many of the symptoms of PCOS, one being excess hair growth.
Treatment & Management
The cause of PCOS is unknown, however blood tests almost always show insulin resistance and a higher level of testosterone levels in women. Women with PCOS are typically treated with a cocktail of drugs: birth control pills, medications to stop the male pattern hair growth ie facial hair, diabetes drug metformin to lower blood sugar. These may help in the short term, however they are a band-aid solution.
A long term solution and a more holistic way to manage PCOS is to make changes to your lifestyle and diet.
At Epilase, we liaise with a professional health coach that offers a holistic approach to dietary changes that may help with symptoms associated with PCOS.
To find out more, please speak with one of our clinicians for further information.
If you would like to further your knowledge and really understand pcos and ways to manage it, here are some great links/ videos that will give you guidance.
these links are purely for your own interest and knowlede and as a helpful guide. You should still be seeking medical attention from a physician that may lead to further testing to find out the root cause of pcos.
Treatment takes time
Although working with these modalities will help to achieve results over time, it is not instant and the time it takes for successful result depends on a number of factors.
- The cause of the hair growth such as hormonal changes in the body i.e. Puberty, pregnancy, menopause, certain medication
- Any underlying medical conditions i.e. PCOS
- Stages of hair growth i.e. active, transitional, dormant
- Whether the body is still producing more hair
- The quantity of hair to be treated
- Previous temporary methods of hair removal used (some can encourage hair growth e.g. tweezing
Patients with hormone related conditions such as PCOS may need many years of Electrology and/ or Laser. Establishing the root cause and making changes to better manage underlying hormonal conditions can be beneficial to the long term outcome of the treatment preventing dormant follicles from stimulating in the future.
Our goal here at Epilase is to provide you with the most realistic outcome and treatment plan that will best suit your individual concerns. It is our mission to help you every step of the way to re-gain your confidence once again.”
Laser vs Electrolysis
Treatment of facial hair isn’t just limited to working with electrolysis. At Epilase we have the advantage of working with Laser and/ or Electrolysis to target most hair types and hair colours. This sets us apart from many hair removal clinics that offer just one or the other.
Whilst electrolysis is a popular treatment method for facial hair removal, it can be a slower process in comparison to Lasers. With the right hair type and colour, Lasers can be an excellent modality in reducing the bulk of the hair and even clearing the majority over a period of time.
Treatment area, colour and the type of hair are what determines whether treatments are more suitable with Laser or electrolysis. This will be discussed in greater detail during your consultation.
With our experience and knowledge, we can confidently identify the type of facial hair that responds well with either Laser or Electrolysis or a combination of both. This will be discussed in greater detail during your consultation.
What about hair stimulation with Laser?
Treatment of unwanted facial hair with Lasers or light based treatments can be tricky due to the risk of stimulating other surrounding dormant or vellus (soft) hair follicles.
At times, we have young women who have had treatments elsewhere come to us to “fix” the stimulated hair issue with electrolysis, as they are too afraid to go near a laser again.
Often enough, the problem isn’t so much to do with the Laser system but more so the experience of the Clinician and how the treatment is performed.
To achieve the best possible result and avoid the risk of stimulation, our clinicians are confident in knowing the type of hair to treat and the type to avoid. Not only that, we work with the most accurate Laser parameters i.e. wavelength, pulse duration and energy output suitable for every individual’s unique hair and skin.
It is our duty of care and obligation to provide you with our honest advice in letting you know what type of hair we can treat to get the best possible result, and what hair to avoid to minimise the risk of stimulation.