Most women tend to hide some facts about their sexual life or genital health. However, gynecologists don’t ask you about the number of sex partners or whether you’ve had an abortion to embarrass you. It is important to understand that even seemingly insignificant detail can tell a lot about your condition. In this article, we gathered seven things you should tell your gynecologist.
1. Abnormal discharge
There are a lot of diseases and infections that can cause unusual discharge. For example, you may have a regular yeast infection that doesn’t need a complicated treatment. However, the abnormal discharge may appear as a result of a sexually transmitted disease (STD), like chlamydia, herpes, or gonorrhea. These conditions require immediate treatment and medical attention. If left untreated, they can lead to pelvic inflammatory disease (PID) and other complications.
2. Unexpected or heavy bleeding
Despite the fact that spotting between period is considered normal, heavy bleeding can manifest certain conditions. Large uterine fibroids can bleed and cause painful sensations throughout the cycle. That’s why it is important to tell your gynecologist about your condition and undergo fibroids treatment. Moreover, unexpected bleeding can be a sign of uterine or cervical cancer that should be treated as soon as possible. Hormonal imbalance can also lead to bloody discharge.
3. Pelvic pain
If you experience severe pelvic pain and cramps during your periods, this condition is called dysmenorrhea. Dysmenorrhea can be primary and secondary. Primary dysmenorrhea is pain during periods that usually lasts for a couple of days and is not complicated by any underlying disease. This condition can be treated with the help of OTC painkillers and warmer. Secondary dysmenorrhea is a sharp pain in the pelvic area that is caused by certain diseases like uterine fibroids, endometriosis, or PID. In this case, you should undergo a gynecological examination in order to find the exact cause of your pain. Only then you can start treatment.
4. You’ve had unprotected sex
Unprotected sexual intercourse can lead not only to unwanted pregnancy. Even if you have a regular sexual partner, there is a risk to get an STD. Moreover, such a condition as human papillomavirus can be transmitted through skin-to-skin contact. That’s why it is recommended to perform both a pregnancy test and STD testing.
5. You suspect pregnancy
The most common symptoms of pregnancy include missed periods, fatigue, frequent urination, nausea, and vomiting. However, these symptoms can be caused by other factors and don’t necessarily mean that you are pregnant. That’s why if you suspect that you can be pregnant, take a home pregnancy test and consult your gynecologist. Even if you performed a pregnancy test and it was positive, you’ll need extra tests and a prenatal-vitamin prescription. If this pregnancy was unplanned and you consider abortion, it is better to discuss it with your gynecologist as well.
6. Pain during sex
Pain during sex can be caused by many factors like deep penetration, lack of lubrication, or certain medical condition. For example, you may have vulvodynia, which is a pain in the vulva or entrance to the vagina. Except for pain, the most common symptoms of vulvodynia include burning, soreness, throbbing, and itching. Endometriosis can also lead to painful sensations during intercourse. This condition occurs when the uterine lining (endometrium) grows outside the uterus on pelvic organs. It can affect ovaries, fallopian tubes, intestines, and even bladder.
7. Persistent bloating, accompanied by pelvic pressure and pain
Individually, persistent bloating that is accompanied by pelvic pressure and pain can be symptoms of many conditions. But when they occur together consistently for two weeks or more and feel worse than routine tummy trouble, they may be signs of ovarian cancer. If you have a family history of ovarian cancer or breast cancer, it is better to make an appointment with your doctor and discuss your risk of ovarian cancer.