Have you been diagnosed with cervicitis? If so, chances are pretty good that you have questions about this condition. This condition, which causes inflammation of the cervix, is surprisingly common. There are many reasons why someone might develop cervicitis:
- A sexually transmitted disease (e.g. gonorrhea; genital herpes)
- Allergies (e.g. latex)
- Injury to the cervix
- Irritation (e.g. from diaphragm)
- A bacterial or hormonal imbalance
- Cancer (Rare)
Some women may have cervicitis but never even know that they have it. Some women with cervicitis may experience abdominal pain, yellow or gray discharge, vaginal itching and bleeding, painful urination or pain during sex.
What puts you at risk for cervicitis? While any woman can develop this condition you are more at risk for developing this inflammatory problem if you have multiple sexual partners, have sex without a condom or if you’ve had cervicitis in the past.
A simple swab test of the cervix is often all that’s needed to diagnose this problem. If you’ve been diagnosed with cervicitis, or if you suspect that you might have it, this is something that needs to be treated right away. Cervicitis can actually spread to other areas such as the fallopian tubes or uterus.
Cervicitis will often get worse if left untreated and can lead to other more serious complications such as infertility and pelvic inflammatory disease (PID). If you are pregnant, this condition could also put your unborn baby at risk. This is why it’s so important that you visit your OBGYN if you notice any symptoms or changes in your vaginal health that have you concerned.
Luckily, cervicitis can easily be treated with antibiotics such as doxycycline or azithromycin. Before medication is prescribed your OBGYN will also test for any sexually transmitted infections that may be causing this infection. If a sexually transmitted disease is also detected then we will need to treat that infection accordingly with further medication.
If you are pregnant, doxycycline will not be prescribed. In this situation, you will most likely be prescribed azithromycin or a cephalosporin. Again, the medicine your gynecologist decides to prescribe will be based on the cause of your cervicitis.
If in doubt, turn to your OBGYN to address all of your questions and concerns regarding cervicitis or the symptoms you are experiencing.
While being pregnant should be an exciting time, if you are dealing with diabetes then you may be worried about how this condition could impact your pregnancy or the health of your unborn child. Even before finding out you were pregnant, you should have been monitoring your blood glucose levels regularly. Of course, you will want to be diligent about checking these levels throughout your pregnancy. Having high blood glucose levels, particularly in the early stages of your pregnancy, can cause serious complications for both you and your child.
If you have diabetes and just found out you are pregnant, it’s important that you have an OBGYN that you can turn to for regular care, and to help monitor your diabetes throughout the course of your pregnancy. It’s imperative that you are taking good care of yourself and that we create a customized treatment plan for you that will ensure that both you and your baby stay healthy.
Most mothers with diabetes wonder how this condition could affect them or their baby. There are so many hormonal changes that occur during your pregnancy that can also alter your blood glucose levels in new and potentially serious ways. It doesn’t matter how long you’ve lived with diabetes, once you find out you are pregnant your obstetrician will want to determine certain lifestyle modifications such as what foods to remove from your diet and how often you should be exercising, as well as certain diabetes medications that are safe for you to use while pregnant.
Particularly in the beginning stages of your pregnancy, high blood glucose could be very dangerous for your baby and could increase your chances of a miscarriage. Later on, this could also put you at risk for a stillbirth. It can affect your child’s weight, respiration and even how early they are born. Just like diabetes can impact the health of your organs, so too can it affect and harm your child’s lungs, heart, brain, and kidneys and stunt their development.
By having an OBGYN that you can turn to and trust to answer all of your questions and address all of your concerns about diabetes, you can ensure that both you and your unborn child are healthy and happy.
Giving birth is one of the most exciting, beautiful, and difficult things many women will ever do. Taking care of yourself afterward may seem trivial in comparison with the demands of your new baby. However, postpartum care is a crucial part of recovering properly and getting yourself back into top physical health to provide the care your newborn requires.
What to Expect
- Vaginal Birth: You will experience soreness in your vaginal area, especially if you had a tear or episiotomy during the birth. You may feel afterpains, or mild contractions after giving birth. These will accompany several weeks of vaginal discharge called lochia, which presents itself as bright red and flows heavily during the first days after delivery, tapering off over the next few weeks. Bowel movements may be difficult and cause hemorrhoids.
- Caesarean Section: Caesarean sections require a longer hospital stay than a vaginal birth, usually around three to four days. After receiving pain medication, your doctors and nurses will encourage walking short distances to help with the buildup of gas within the abdomen. Many women find walking to be very difficult at first, but gets easier with time. You will also experience some vaginal bleeding in the days or weeks after delivery.
Postpartum care after a vaginal birth is different than caesarean section aftercare. After a vaginal delivery, sitting on a pillow or donut may help avoid pain from a tear or episiotomy. Drinking plenty of water and eating foods that are high in fiber can help keep stools soft if you have problems passing bowel movements. Your doctor can also prescribe stool softeners if necessary. Using an icepack or a frozen sanitary pad coated with witch hazel can help relieve discomfort and pain along with over-the-counter pain relievers.
Aftercare for a caesarean section begins during your hospital stay. Your doctor may administer narcotics like morphine to help with pain relief for the first day or two. After leaving the hospital, you will require as much help as possible. You may receive a prescription for pain relievers. Your incision will remain tender and sore for several weeks after delivery though it will heal gradually and feel better every day. Be sure to get plenty of rest and avoid lifting heavy items for at least eight weeks. Your scar will start out very obvious but shrink as you heal.
High-risk pregnancies occur when your health or that of your baby can be affected during the pregnancy or delivery. Are you concerned your pregnancy may be high-risk? Take a look at a few factors that can increase your risk.
If you're under age 17 or over 35, your pregnancy will be considered high risk, due to the increased likelihood of complications.
Preeclampsia, also called toxemia, occurs when you develop high blood pressure and a high level of protein in your urine. The condition can be dangerous for both you and your baby and usually develops after the 20th week of pregnancy. It can cause swelling in the hands, legs, and feet.
This form of diabetes develops around the 24th week of pregnancy and is usually detected during a routine screening. The problem occurs when your body can't use glucose efficiently. In most cases, you'll no longer have diabetes after your baby is born.
Complications, gestational diabetes, and premature labor are more likely if you're carrying more than one baby.
Your pregnancy will be considered high-risk if there's a developmental or genetic problem with your baby, or if a heart, lung or kidney problem is spotted during an ultrasound,
Placenta previa occurs when the placenta partially or completely covers the cervix. If you have the condition, you may experience severe bleeding during your pregnancy. Because severe bleeding can also occur during birth, you may need a Cesarean section, particularly if the placenta completely covers the cervix. Bed rest is usually recommended for women who have placenta previa.
You or your baby may be more likely to experience complications if you have high blood pressure, cancer, epilepsy, asthma, diabetes, HIV or AIDS, lung disease, autoimmune disorders, kidney or heart problems, or sexually transmitted diseases.
Women who have had three or more miscarriages can benefit from more intense monitoring during pregnancy.
Most high-risk pregnancies have happy endings, thanks to the special care women receive during the pregnancies. If you have an issue that could raise your risk, it's important to talk to your ob/gyn about your concerns as soon as you become pregnant or notice a problem.
Due to the complexities of the female reproductive system, women have health concerns that require regular testing by an Ob/Gyn (obstetrician-gynecologist). The standard gynecological test administered to women in their reproductive years is called a pap smear. Find out why you shouldn't put off getting a pap smear if you're a woman over the age of 21.
What Is a Pap Smear?
A pap smear is an exam that allows your gynecologist to view a sample of cells on your cervix. A tool called a speculum is used to widen the vagina so that a swab of cells can be taken and the cervix can be examined visually. The entire procedure takes about 30 minutes. Women also often opt for STD testing at their pap smear appointments.
Why Pap Smears Are Important
Regular pap smears are important because they allow for early detection of potential problems. One of the most common concerns that gynecologists have for sexually active women is cervical cancer caused by HPV (human papillomavirus). When abnormal cells are checked and caught early, they can be treated with simple procedures to avoid future problems. Cervical cancer is considered very rare now, mostly thanks to regular pap smears, and it is most effectively treated in its early stages. Other concerns, like Bacterial Vaginosis and yeast infections can be diagnosed by a pap smear, and treated with medication.
How Often Should You Schedule a Pap Smear Appointment?
The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) recommends that regardless of sexual activity, young women should schedule their first pap smear appointment at age 21. After that, pap smears should be scheduled every two years until age 30. After that, pap smear appointment can be scheduled every three years as long as there isn't a problem detected. Women who have abnormal pap smears should take their gynecologist's advice for how often to come in for checkups.
Call Your Ob/Gyn Today
Today is a good day to call your local Ob/Gyn to schedule a pap smear. Don't put off this relatively simple and quick checkup appointment for women as it is an important part of maintaining good gynecological health.
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