PCOS and Depression

Psychology Facts / Monday, August 12th, 2019

There is a strong correlation between polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) and depression. Research studies show that more than 40 percent of women suffering from PCOS also experience depression. But what normally leads to this? Well, there are multiple hypotheses supported by research which highlight the relationship between PCOS and depression.

Stress and Hormonal Imbalance

PCOS can lead to chronic stress and hormonal imbalance. Some women even end up experiencing physical side effects such as excessive growth of body or facial hair. On the other hand, there is a direct relationship between stress and depression. Studies show that prolonged stress can lead to depression.


PCOS is a medical condition that is highly likely to result in obesity. Women with it have high chances of gaining extra weight than those without. It’s worth noting that one of the major causes of depression is obesity. This means that the link between PCOS and obesity can lead to depression. pcos and depression

Inflammation and Insulin-Resistance

More than 60 percent of women with PCOS are usually insulin-resistant. As a result, their body cells can’t effectively absorb glucose leading to high blood sugar. On the other hand, PCOS can also cause inflammation all over the body. These two conditions can lead to stress and eventually depression.

Note that prolonged inflammation normally results in high levels of cortisol which eventually translates to stress or depression. Furthermore, high levels of cortisol also enhance the risk of insulin resistance which can lead to stress and depression.

In case you have PCOS and depression, your doctor will try to establish the cause. They may advise you to use a low-carb diet if you are overweight or insulin-resistant. You may also be advised to undergo various therapies for depression including cognitive-behavioral therapy and psychodynamic therapy. In case the correlation between PCOS and depression is hormonal imbalance, you may be given birth control pills.

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