It is estimated that about 85 to 88% of women suffer from one or the other gynecological problems but about more than half of them are feeling shy to discuss about what s happening ‘down’ and suffer in silence. Girls it is your right to start feeling well from inside also as gynecological issues can interfere with your sex life , can affect your quality of life by causing unnecessary pain and bleeding problems and can put you at high risk for developing mega diseases like cancers and infertility .
As a gynecologist, I would wish all of you a very positive, healthy,happy and respectful feeling about your reproductive system and sexual organs which make an important and healthy part of us and they need to be treated well.
DIET AND NUTRITION:
1. Eat healthy diet to maintain a healthy body weight. Your menstrual cycle is highly dependent on your weight; women who are too thin or too heavy may start to experience problems such as losing their periods or having excessive or irregular flow. Eating a healthy, high-fibre , colorful diet and drinking lots of water can also keep you gynecologically healthy and reduce your chances of developing PCOD or polycystic ovarian disease and its sequelae like diabetes, hypertension, uterine cancer etc.
2. Drink plenty of water. It prevents frequent UTI or urinary tract infections which women are more prone to.
1. Do your Kegel exercises to keep the pelvic floor healthy. A weak pelvic floor can cause problems with your bladder, such as loss of urine with a cough or sneeze, and can contribute to sexual problems.
2.Work out regularly . It may include walking, jogging, goint to the gym or doing yoga.
SAFE SEXUAL PRACTICES:
Practice safe sex. The most common sexually transmitted diseases include HIV, HPV, genital herpes, Chlamydia, syphilis, Hepatitis B, Trichomoniasis, other fungal infections on vulva etc. HIV is a dreaded disease which destroys the body’s ability to fight infection and increases susceptibility to disease and cancers; Human Papillomaviruses (HPVs) increase the risk of developing cervical cancer; and gonorrhea, which could cause pelvic inflammatory disease, ectopic pregnancy and infertility.
Avoid smoking. Drink alcohol in moderation and this healthy change in the lifestyle will help you a lot to maintain good gynecological health. As many gynecological ailments like PCOD, uterine cancer, pelvic infections etc. are related to life style
1. Care for your vulva and vagina by avoiding harsh soaps , perfumery and douching or hard cleaning, Wear light breathable clothing
2. Use the menstrual pads which suit your body and do not get carried away by advertising. Wearing a damp ,wet pad for a long time can lead to problems like skin rashes, urinary tract infections or UTIs and also vaginal infection. Ideally you should change your pad every 6 hours and more frequently if you have heavy flow.
3. Wash yourself with water only more often when you are menstruating and make sure that you wash off all the blood properly and are odor free.
4. It is your responsibility to dispose off the sanitary napkin in a proper manner as it can spread infections and if flushed down the toilet, it can clog the drainage pipes.
Get your annual gynecological checkup done alongwith regular Pap tests which may include HPV DNA testing also, which can help detect abnormal cells early, thereby lowering your risk of cervical cancer.
1.Avoid unwanted pregnancies
2.Avoid indiscriminate use of emergency contraception
3.Plan your pregnancy on time after getting examined by your gynecologist who may advice you to start medications like folic acid and may subject you to do some primary tests before your pregnancy. Once women are into their mid 30s, it becomes more difficult to get pregnant and the risk of miscarriage increases. Good health prior to becoming pregnant is beneficial to you and your baby; a preconception checkup can help determine whether you are at risk of any medical problems so you can treat them beforehand and can help ease the stress of pregnancy and delivery.
Self examination of breast makes you breast- cancer-conscious and must be done by every woman after their periods or every month after menopause.Regular mammogram at yearly or 2 yearly interval helps in diagnosis of a serious disease like breast cancer where early detection and treatment forms a key to successful freedom from cancer.
Menopause is the end of menstruation and not the end of happiness. Don’t let yourself be carried away by menopause blues. Be mentally and physically active. Aging is inevitable and is a part of life. Accept the change and respect the life whch has so much to offer to you. Embrace it.