Ovarian cysts are generally a benign problem for women, but even though they don’t represent a health hazard, it’s best to treat them quickly, in order to prevent complications in the future. They usually occur during the years between puberty and menopause, and after menopause are quite uncommon.
What are cysts?
An ovarian cyst is a small fluid-filled sac that forms inside or outside a woman’s ovary. They occur when a woman is in the process of ovulation: a small follicle forms on one of the two ovaries, and is broken when the egg matures and is ready to be fertilized.
After the egg is released, this small sac dissolves and is reabsorbed by the body naturally. But if for some reason, or if the sac persists after the egg is released, it may fill with fluid, grow larger, and form a cyst.
What causes cysts?
A woman is at an increased risk of developing ovarian cysts if she has irregular menstrual cycles, is subjected to fertility treatments, or has hormonal imbalances or other genetic factors.
How are ovarian cysts detected?
Usually ovarian cysts do not have alarming symptoms. But in some cases, they may be detected due to a sharp pain in the abdomen during certain activities.
And if the cyst begins to bleed or ruptures, it causes intense pain that must be addressed quickly as it can lead to vaginal bleeding. Another way they are discovered is from experiencing pain right before the period starts, or during sexual intercourse.
Other symptoms that may indicate the presence of an ovarian cyst are:
- Nausea or vomiting
- Breast tenderness
- Weight gain
- Problems with urination
- Swelling of the abdomen or pelvic region
- Pain in the lower back or thighs
- A combination of pain, fever, and vomiting
If you experience any of these symptoms it’s important to consult a doctor who will perform a pelvic exam to confirm if there are cysts on the ovaries. If they suspect this is the case, it can be confirmed with an ultrasound or an MRI. Additionally, a blood test can help determine if the cyst needs to be removed or not.
How can ovarian cysts be prevented?
To prevent the formation of ovarian cysts, here are some recommendations for you that can easily be done at home.
Maintain a healthy diet
To treat and prevent the formation of ovarian cysts, ideally your diet should include more foods that are rich in fiber and water, which reduces abdominal pressure. But in addition to this, it’s a good idea to also add foods that have high levels of vitamins and minerals, especially zinc and vitamins B and C.
When you’re experiencing abdominal pain, a warm or hot compress can reduce swelling and reduce the level of discomfort.
Drink relaxing herbal teas
When you’re experiencing symptoms like abdominal swelling or pain, it’s best to drink a tea made with chamomile, mint, or raspberry. These teas help ease stress and have a calming effect, making them ideal before bedtime.
A habit as simple as drinking plenty of water can help prevent the formation of ovarian cysts because it keeps you well-hydrated. It’s recommended that we drink at least 8 glasses of water every day.
Dandelion is known for its diuretic properties that help detox the liver, eliminate toxins, and improve hormonal balance. Bearing that in mind, dandelion tea is great for helping to reduce and prevent the formation of cysts on the ovaries.
Get regular exercise
Exercising regularly helps regulate the body’s hormonal cycle, prevent abdominal pain, and generally improve your overall health. It’s been shown that women who are physically active tend to have fewer irregularities in their menstrual cycle, and this helps reduce the formation of ovarian cysts.