Polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) is a common endocrine disorder that affects around 5 to 10% of women of reproductive age. Though the cause is unknown, it is suggested to be a combination of genetic and environmental factors. PCOS has been linked to insulin resistance. Insulin resistance is when your body doesn’t respond to insulin as it should. Insulin is a hormone that helps your body turn sugar into energy. If your body is resistant to insulin, it makes more insulin to try to get the sugar into your cells.

Although there are many signs and symptoms we all know, excessive hair growth, weight gain, and irregular periods, there are a number of symptoms people don’t talk about. This is based on 3 reddit threads about PCOS symptoms. This is not a list based on science, studies or medical professionals but simply a list that people who experience PCOS have noticed. Here are some of some the more uncommon symptoms you could potentially expect:

Hair Thinning/Brittle Hair

Some people experience thinning or brittle hair as a symptom. It can also appear as a male patterned balding. I am currently experiencing this and for someone who has had long thick hair, it is depressing. I experienced a wave of a massive amount of hair coming out my hair every time I washed my hair.


PCOS can affect your mental health in a variety of ways. Be sure to journal and maintain therapy. There will be days when there you absolutely cannot pinpoint the source of your feelings but they will exist. Also, be mindful of the medications you take, some can enhance mental health issues.


I am not sure if I have explicitly experienced this because of PCOS but I have never liked to sleep even as a child. But, I have read on reddit and other posts about people experiencing insomnia.


You will always, ALWAYS be tired. When I say always, I mean ALWAYS. I can have a restful night sleep of 10 hours and will be too tired to think or do anything during the day.


Everything will feel swollen. When I am at my highest weight or my lowest, I always felt swollen. Massages and acupuncture can help alleviate the feeling.

No Sex Drive

Because PCOS affects your hormones you can experience a very low sex drive.

High Sex Drive

Some people experience high sex drives. It could also be due to the off balance in hormones.

No Appetite

This is a major symptom that does not get a lot of notice, although it is one that many people with PCOS experience. I can go days without feeling hunger. It sounds like an easy way to drop weight but it actually contributes to weight gain and overeating.

Carb Cravings

You will crave carbs. Although many say stay away from them, I say be mindful of what you eat and how much you eat. You can have carbs in moderation and moderation for someone with PCOS may be a little less than someone without it but don’t feel pressured to change your diet over night.

Trouble Focusing

I barely finished this. There are days that my ability to focus is debilitating.


I have been tested for my thyroid when my hair started falling out.


People have mentioned digestive issues related to PCOS.

Thin Finger Nails

There were a number of people who mentioned thin finger nails.

Reddit Thread 1

Reddit Thread 2

Reddit Thread 3

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