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The year of COVID-19 has recorded many health problems. Along with respiratory problems and other symptoms of COVID-19, the rise in PCOS cases have also been observed during the lockdown.
As lifestyle habits have been compromised this year due to working from home, closed gyms and parks, mental stress, disturbance in sleep pattern, lack of motivation, overeating due to boredom and limited social interactions, health problems have taken a toll.
The number of PCOS cases have increased among working women and adolescents due to the current scenario. Also, those who were already suffering from PCOS have noticed worsening of the condition. Take a look at the few tips to deal with PCOS during the lockdown. But before that, let's understand what is PCOS.
What Is PCOS?
Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) or polycystic ovary disease (PCOD) is a hormonal problem in women of childbearing age (15-44 age). The condition increases the production of male hormones in women which in turn, disrupt the balance of the hormones and cause irregular or skipped periods.
In PCOS, many cysts (follicles with immatured egg) grow inside the ovaries and never get mature. Due to the lack of maturation, ovulation does not take place and infertility problems arise.
The exact cause of PCOS is still unknown but lifestyle factors such as obesity are mainly known to trigger the condition. Symptoms include irregular periods, acne, weight gain, hair growth on face and body, headache and dark patches on neck or groin areas.
PCOS can't be cured (like diabetes or cancer) but can be managed with lifestyle changes such as exercise, proper diet and timely sleep. Even a small reduction in weight can cause massive improvement in the PCOS symptoms.
Tips To Deal With PCOS During COVID-19 Lockdown
1. Maintain a sleep timing
Sleep is a vital lifestyle factor in the treatment of PCOS. According to experts, women with PCOS are more prone to sleep disorders like obstructive sleep apnea and daytime sleepiness. These problems are linked to overweight and insulin resistance caused due to hormonal imbalance.
Therefore, make ways to maintain proper sleep and wake timings. Also, avoid daytime sleepiness by indulging in certain hobbies. 
2. Do household chores
Due to the COVID-19 lockdown, people are bound to stay at their homes with only limited access to outside. Gyms and parks are closed to prevent the virus spread, and this has massively affected the workout routine of many people. Though people are still on with their daily exercises at home, the intensity of the workouts has reduced. 
The best way to make up for it is by doing household chores such as washing clothes, sweeping floors, mopping, dusting and gardening, along with your daily exercises. These chores help a lot in burning calories and maintaining weight.
3. Never miss on morning exercise
Morning exercises are a part of life, no matter you are working from home or office. Daily exercises not only help us maintain body shape but also boost our immunity that helps fight many diseases. We know, how important immunity is these days.
Therefore, performing daily exercises will not only help us manage PCOS symptoms but may help keep COVID-19 away due to good immunity.
4. Eat a balanced diet
A balanced diet is another essential factor for a good lifestyle. The COVID-19 lockdown has made people experiment on varieties of dishes. Though these foods are homecooked, including large amounts of sugar, cheese, butter, flour and oils in diet can improve the chances of weight gain and worsen the PCOS symptoms. Also, binge eating due to COVID-19 stress can add more to the symptoms. 
Therefore, it is advisable to avoid such habits and stick to a balanced diet. Instead of sugar, use sweet fruits and cut down on oil by roasting foods.
5. Yoga and breathing exercises
Stress is an invisible factor which is strongly linked to PCOS. A report says that the stress level in women is higher than men.  Another study says that stress tends to alter the body composition parameters in PCOS patients. 
Mental and emotional issues have spiked during the lockdown period. Therefore, the best way to deal with it is to do yoga and breathing exercises. They tend to lower the stress, improve breathing problems and contribute to the well-being of a person.
COVID-19 lockdown has not only trigged PCOS in many women but had also worsened the symptoms in many. It has also caused problems for women who were undergoing fertility treatments due to PCOS.
The current scenario may be stressful but the best way to deal with it is to use the lockdown as an opportunity. Do things you enjoy and indulge more in exercises, yoga and meditation. This will keep your stress away and will improve sleep quality.