Posts for category: Women's Health
If you are sexually active, getting regular STI screenings is a crucial and proactive practice to adopt for both your health and the health of your future partners. It’s important to know if you have an STI so that the infection can be treated or managed before more serious health complications set in. While using condoms, being monogamous and avoiding risky behaviors can go a long way to keeping you healthy and safe from infection, it’s important that everyone who is sexually active continue to get screened, no matter their age.
When To Get Tested
It’s important to get routine screenings even if you feel fine and aren’t experiencing symptoms, as many people with STIs don’t ever experience symptoms. Even when symptoms do arise it’s easy to mistake them for less serious issues such as the common cold or flu virus. Did you know that some STIs present with a fever, sore throat and muscle aches? What might seem like the regular influenza virus could actually be an STI. Furthermore, it’s not that uncommon to be exposed to more than one STI at a time. So, you could have multiple infections and not know it.
While a lot of people feel nervous or even embarrassed to get STI screenings, having an OBGYN or medical doctor that you trust is the most important. Trust us; they’ve heard it all, so you should feel comfortable talking to your doctor about your sexual health. Being as honest as possible about your current or past sexual history is important to make sure you get the proper medical care.
Even though untreated STIs can lead to more serious health problems down the road, the good news is that many STIs can easily be treated if the infection is caught early enough. Even incurable STIs like hepatitis, herpes, and HIV can be managed through simple lifestyle changes and medications to reduce the frequency and severity of symptoms and to improve your quality of life.
Even if you come in once a year for a wellness checkup or Pap smear, this doesn’t mean that you are getting screened for an STI. Of course, during your routine exam you can ask to also be screened for STIs. If you are pregnant or planning on becoming pregnant, having an untreated STI can cause serious health risks for your unborn child.
It’s important that you get regular STI testing to ensure that you and your partners enjoy a safe and healthy lifestyle!
Getting older means overcoming many different obstacles as your life and your body change. But you must deal with one that is uniquely female: menopause and the symptoms that come with it. You know the symptoms commonly associated with menopause—hot flashes, night sweats, mood swings, difficulty sleeping, vaginal dryness—but did you know that they are treatable and that menopause doesn’t have to be insurmountable?
If you have moderate to severe symptoms, hormone replacement therapy (HRT) is an effective treatment for hot flashes and can also help elevate vaginal dryness and mood issues. It has traditionally been administered with pills like birth control, but also like birth control it can now be taken through patches, creams, gels, and vaginal rings. If you have not had a hysterectomy, you could be prescribed estrogen and progesterone, called combination HRT. If you have had a hysterectomy, estrogen alone would be prescribed.
Not all women are candidates for HRT. Those who have breast or uterine cancer, blood clots, heart or liver disease, or have had a stroke would be better candidates for the following options.
Vaginal estrogen is a lower dose of estrogen that comes as a cream, tablet, or ring and is placed in the vagina to treat vaginal dryness if you don’t have hot flashes. Vaginal lubricants and moisturizers are non-prescription options to treat dryness as well. Lubricants can help decrease friction and ease intercourse, but be sure to only use water-soluble products designed for the vagina to avoid irritating tender tissue. Moisturizers can improve or maintain vaginal moisture if you have mild vaginal atrophy and can also keep your pH level low, ensuring a healthy vaginal environment. They can also be used regularly with longer-lasting effects than lubricants.
Prescription antidepressant medications are often used to treat mood problems, like depression, with relatively few side effects. They have also been used to treat hot flashes. However, if you are having mood issues, be sure to talk with your doctor to identify the cause and decide on the best treatment.
You’d be surprised how far simple lifestyle changes, like eating a healthy diet and regularly exercising, can go in minimizing menopause symptoms. Wearing light-weight pajamas, using layered bedding that can easily be removed, and using a fan in your bedroom can help with night sweats while keeping a regular sleep schedule and nighttime routine can make falling asleep and staying asleep easier.
The onset of menopause is a big change, and dealing with its symptoms can be daunting. But you don’t have to take on this new phase in your life alone. No matter if you are suffering severe symptoms or you just have some questions of what to expect as you get older, our office is here to help. Call to schedule your appointment today.
This might be an embarrassing conversation to start but it’s one that every woman faces at some point during her lifetime. While this might not be a topic you’ll want to bring up with your girlfriends, if you are experiencing this issue it’s always a good idea to turn to your OBGYN for more information. After all, this change in vaginal odor could be trying to tell you that there is an issue. Here are some reasons why you might be experiencing this problem and what you should do about it.
This is often the most obvious reason why a woman faces unpleasant vaginal odor. There are several different kinds of infections that could be to blame. One common infection is bacterial vaginosis, which may also cause burning during urination and a grayish-white discharge. In most cases, this condition is treated with antibiotics.
Of course, trichomoniasis (a parasitic STD) or a yeast infection could also be to blame. Some yeast infections can be treated with over-the-counter antifungal medications, but trichomoniasis will require a round of antibiotics. To play it safe, visit your gynecologist right away if you noticing any of these symptoms.
It goes without saying that your hormones fluctuate throughout the month and you may find that you experience a change in vaginal odor in that small window after ovulation but before your period. During the start of menopause, women may also notice an unpleasant watery discharge, which is often the result of reduced levels of estrogen. In this case, a gynecologist may prescribe a vaginal cream that contains estrogen, which can help reduce or even eliminate this unpleasant symptom.
If you are a woman in her mid-40s or older and noticing changes in vaginal odor, you could be going through menopause. Turn to your OBGYN to get all of your questions addressed about the symptoms you may be having as you approach menopause.
Just as sweating anywhere else can bring about an unpleasant change in body odor, sweating down below can also cause vaginal odor. Athletes, wearing tight clothing or being overweight can also increase your chances of developing a sweat-related vaginal odor. If this is something that happens to you, make sure to wear more breathable fabrics (e.g. cotton), change wet workout clothes immediately or lose the excess weight (if necessary).
If your vaginal odor is accompanied by symptoms such as itching, burning, redness, pain, discharge or sores, you need to visit a gynecologist right away for treatment.
While your period may put a damper on some of your activities it doesn’t have to get in the way of everything. OB-GYNs often hear women asking whether it’s okay to have sex while on their period. The simple answer is that sex is completely fine during this time of the month. Of course, there is a lot more that goes into it. Find out everything you need to know about having sex while on your period to decide whether this is the right decision for you.
The first thing to consider is how comfortable you feel with having sex while on your period. It’s completely natural and completely safe, but some women are concerned that they might feel a bit self-conscious or that they may ruin the sheets. If you are concerned about getting blood on your bedding, you can always place a towel down, or opt for another location such as the shower that won’t have you worried that you may have to throw out your nice new sheets.
One benefit to having sex while on your period is that menstruation can often act as a lubricant, which can make the act more pleasurable for everyone. Plus, with the elevation of hormones such as estrogen and testosterone, you may find yourself more sexually charged and more easily aroused, which can be a major plus. If you also find that you easily experience dryness during sex then having sex while on your period may actually improve the situation. It’s even believed that orgasms can help with menstrual cramps.
Of course, there are two other things to consider before you get down to business. The first thing you’ll want to do is discuss this with your partner to make sure that everyone is comfortable with the idea of having sex while on your period. By making sure that your partner is completely comfortable with the situation you negate any negative thoughts or concerns you may have during sex.
The second thing to consider is that many women hear that they can’t get pregnant during their period so they opt to have sex without a condom. It’s important that you talk to your gynecologist about the risks involved in not using a condom. Besides the risk of contracting STDs, there is also still a possibility that you could get pregnant. For some women, their ovulation overlaps with their menstruation. If you aren’t taking birth control then you’ll want to wear protection even during this time of the month.
If you have questions about your sexual health, menstruation or other women’s health issues, your OBGYN is here to help. There is no question too embarrassing or awkward. We are here to make sure you get the answers you need to lead a healthy life.
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.