If You Have A Teen Daughter Living With PCOS Here’s How To Support Her
Puberty itself can be difficult for any teen girl – navigating changing relationships with their girls, boyfriends, classes and body changes. But, coupled with PCOS (polycystic ovary syndrome) the adolescent years can be even harder.
PCOS is a common endocrine disorder affecting many young African-American women. My daughter was diagnosed with PCOS when she was 15 years old. It was tough, as her body was already going through so many changes. “One of the most important ways to help young women with PCOS is to understand the symptoms that can come along with his condition and the emotional toll that it can take,” Dr. Jennifer Caudle, Family Physician and Assistant Professor at Rowan University School of Osteopathic Medicine, tells BlackDoctor.org.
Dr. Caudle adds, “Women may experience pelvic pain, excess hair growth on the face or chest, thinning hair and skin changes among other symptoms. Furthermore, women with PCOS are at a higher risk for diabetes, heart disease and high blood pressure. This may be overwhelming and frightening to some young women.”
PCOS is tricky to diagnose because it’s not always evident and symptoms vary depending on the woman.
According to the PCOS Foundation, studies have found that if a mother has PCOS, there is a 50% chance that her daughter will have PCOS.
Embarrassment about weight gain and facial hair can be overwhelming. As the mother of a daughter who has PCOS, I understand this firsthand. There is no cure for PCOS. If your daughter has received a PCOS diagnosis, there are ways you can support her and help her cope with this condition.
Board certified OB/GYNs and the twin experts behind Twin Doctors TV, Jamil and Idries Abdur-Rahman, offer a few tips to help you support your daughter in managing PCOS:
1. Remind her she isn’t alone. “PCOS is extremely common with some sources sighting a prevalence as high as 12 percent. Understanding that you are not alone or just some strange anomaly is important for anybody, but it is especially important for teens who already have an uncertain as of yet developed sense of self,” explains Dr. Idries.
Dr. Jamil also points out that young women can also be reminded that some pretty famous celebrities she may look up to, like Chrisette Michele, also suffer from PCOS and are managing it successfully.