Taking Charge of Your Gynecological Health : We tend not to want to talk about gynecological health in polite conversation because it can feel a bit naughty to do so. No matter how it feels gynecological health simply refers to the health of the female reproductive system as well as health concerns around pregnancy, childbirth and the postpartum period.
Talking about such areas of health is no different from talking about our heart health or ways to avoid diabetes. If you want to have full control over your own body it comes down to being proactive about your health, knowing when something is wrong, and understanding your own hopes for your body.
When it comes to your gynecological health the first step is to take a proactive approach. One way to do so is to push for universal STI screenings which can catch STIs early. When STIs are caught early they can be treated before they cause long term damage or lead to an increased risk for various cancers. While some STIs might appear minor or harmless in truth unless we are proactive about them, they can affect our physical health, our mental health, and even whether or not we can conceive children.
Until the full range of STI screenings are universal you should make sure that you are also talking to your friends and family about getting these tests done too. While this might not be a subject that we feel comfortable discussing in the end, the more we discuss the importance of such tests with those we love the more we normalize such conversations. This means you might be the one who helps prevent the unnecessary pain or suffering of someone you love. If you save a friend from serious issues such as cancer it will be worth any awkwardness you experience ahead of time. Let us be proactive about both our health and the health of those we care about.
Knowing When Something Is Wrong
In order to fully take charge over your gynecological health it is important to know your own body. What is typical for you might be something of concern for someone else. If you notice changes it is useful to talk with your doctor because some changes can be indicators of other issues. One example of this is having your doctor determining if a lump, bump, or lesion is a sign of an STI, trauma, scratches, allergies due to beauty products, waxing, or even shaving. Even if you think you know the cause of an issue it does not hurt to have a doctor give you a second opinion. Your doctor can tell you if there is a simple solution such as using a different beauty product or if there is something that needs further testing to make sure it is not something serious.
Planning For Your Future
Finally, part of gynecological health is understanding your own hopes for the future. If you are at a life stage where you do not want to have children, your gynecologist can help you determine an effective birth control option. If instead you are eager to have children, your gynecologist can give you tips for conceiving and having a healthy child. Finally, even once you have had a child your gynecologist can still help you by teaching you how to manage any post-pregnancy issues. We all have different hopes and dreams for tomorrow and taking control of our gynecological health means we can choose the path we want to follow, not a path that has been set by others or by society at large.
Gynecological health can seem challenging to navigate at first or can make us feel awkward about discussing with others. We cannot let this awkwardness keep us from taking control over our own bodies and our own futures. So, make sure you incorporate the three steps to gynecological health into your own life and share them with those that you care deeply about. Staying on top of our health can help us live longer and it is important that when we think about our health in general we don’t forget our gynecological health. Taking care of your health is an investment that you won’t regret making.
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