Your OBGYN treats a number of common gynecological conditions, including irregular vaginal bleeding. It’s a concern that can be related to anything from stress, chronic conditions, or reproductive problems. Learn the common causes of irregular bleeding in gynecology, and how you can get your menstrual cycle back to normal.
Irregular Vaginal Bleeding
In their reproductive years, women menstruate about every 28 days as the uterine lining sheds itself. The bleeding is often moderate to heavy during the first couple of days, then tapers off during the next few days. A normal menstrual cycle lasts up to a week. If the process does not repeat every 28 days or so, or a cycle is missed, or the flow of blood is too heavy or too light, that is considered irregular bleeding. Additional symptoms may include poor mood, problems sleeping, and sharp abdominal pains.
You should talk to your OBGYN if your menstrual cycle starts to change or becomes irregular. Irregular bleeding can be caused by one or more of the following factors:
Certain medications (including birth control pills).
Endometriosis (tissue that’s supposed to be inside of the uterus grows on the outside).
Stress and lifestyle.
Blood clotting disorders.
Polycystic ovary syndrome (a hormonal problem).
Pelvic inflammatory disease (an infection usually caused by an STD).
Uterine fibroids (benign growths in the uterus).
Cervical or uterine cancer.
Chronic medical conditions (not necessarily related to the reproductive system).
Treatments for Irregular Bleeding
In some cases, irregular bleeding resolves on its own. For instance, if the irregularity is related to stress, de-stressing activities may help, like light exercise, dietary changes, or bed rest. If the problem is your birth control, your gynecologist will discuss other birth control options. If it’s related to another gynecological condition, the treatment may require an ultrasound and further testing. In more serious cases, surgery may be necessary.
See Your OBGYN
Schedule a visit to your OBGYN if you’re experiencing irregular bleeding. It could an easily treatable issue that your gynecologist can resolve with medications or a minor procedure.
If this is your first pregnancy you may certainly feel like you’re in uncharted territory. There are so many unknowns as you reach 40 weeks and your OBGYN is going to be a crucial part of guiding you throughout this journey into motherhood. An OBGYN will provide you with care, treatment, checkups, and support along the way. One question you may be asking yourself is: Can I exercise while pregnant?
The simple answer is that yes, exercise is part of maintaining a healthy pregnancy. It can help boost your energy and mood, especially during the earlier months when you may be feeling a bit tired and sluggish. Working out can even alleviate aches and pains throughout your pregnancy. In fact, regular physical activity could even be key to preventing gestational diabetes.
If you were working out prior to becoming pregnant then there is no reason why you shouldn’t be able to continue working out; however, some things will need to change. While you may wish to workout at the same intensity and level you had been, your body is going through a lot of changes. Low-impact aerobic exercise such as walking or even swimming may be recommended by an OBGYN over high-intensity training.
What if you were a dedicated Crossfitter, HIIT queen, or marathon-running champ before getting pregnant? If you are a serious athlete, it’s even more important that your obstetrician works with you to create a training and workout program that will help you maintain what you’ve worked hard for while also being safe for both you and baby. This is particularly important for women who are personal trainers or professional athletes.
Starting Exercise While Pregnant
If you haven’t been working out prior to becoming pregnant you may want to take up a more regular exercise regimen to maintain good health throughout your pregnant. Before starting a new workout routine it’s important to consult your OBGYN. It’s important that you start out with slow, easy activities like a brisk walk through the neighborhood. You wouldn’t go from not being active to suddenly tackling a Warrior Run, so you certainly don’t want to do it when you’re pregnant, either. Err on the conservative side when choosing workouts to do while pregnant, especially if you are new to regular exercise. Your OBGYN can provide you with a list of pregnancy-approved exercises.
How Much Exercise is Enough?
Most pregnant women will reap the benefits of exercise if they participate in moderate exercise for at least 30 minutes a day most days of the week, as recommended by the American Academy of Obstetrics and Gynecology. Of course, if you have any health problems such as heart disease or asthma, it’s extremely important that you talk with your OBGYN before you start any workout routine.
Workouts to avoid include any contact sports, exercises that could lead to falls or abdominal injuries, as well as exercising in extreme weather conditions. If you have questions about exercise during pregnant, talk with your OBGYN today.
For many females, making an appointment with a gynecologist can be intimidating, and some avoid visiting one altogether. The truth is, visiting a gynecologist is important for all females. OC Women's Care, which is located in Fountain Valley, CA, is an obstetric and gynecology practice that offers the full range of women's health services. Here are five reasons why you should visit your gynecologist.
1. Pap Smears - A Pap smear is a screening procedure for cervical cancer. A Pap test samples cervical cells to check for abnormalities. Cervical cancer can be prevented with regular pap tests and follow-up. To stay clear of cervical cancer, a pap test is necessary every three years.
2. Pelvic Exams - According to ACOG, women ages 21 years and older should get a yearly pelvic exam. The exam is a thorough check of a woman's pelvic organs. It may not be your favorite appointment, but a pelvic exam is indispensable to your overall health.
3. Breast Exams - A breast exam is a physical examination of the breasts done by a doctor. Breast exams are used to check women for breast cancer. Over 30 percent of women aren't getting breast exams when they should be. Breast examinations are commonly recommended for females over 40. However, if a history of breast cancer is present in your family, then earlier breast examinations are needed.
4. Irregular Menstruation - Have your periods stopped or become irregular? If you have a concern about your menstrual cycle, it is important to make an appointment with your Fountain Valley, CA gynecologist right away. If you ignore the problem, it could cause reproductive problems later on.
5. Birth Control - Birth control allows you to prevent pregnancy. If you are sexually active and are not ready to conceive, you should visit a gynecologist for birth control. Many females don't know that birth control can also be used to treat a variety of female problems.
When was your last visit to the gynecologist? Don't take risks with your health. Yearly visits to the gynecologist are a great start to taking control of your health. Call OC Women's Care, which is located in Fountain Valley, CA at (714) 966-21128 right now to schedule an appointment with one of our world-class gynecologists.
Did you know that cervical cancer is the fourth most common cancer for women worldwide? While this statistic can be startling the good news is that it is one of the most preventable cancers. A cervical cancer screening is one of the best and most reliable tools our OBGYN has to detect cancerous and precancerous cells within the cervix. This screening is most often referred to as a Pap test.
What is a Pap test?
Women as young as 21 years old should start getting routine cervical cancer screenings from their OBGYN. If results from the first Pap smear are normal then women between the ages of 21 to 29 will only need to get a Pap test every three years. Women with an abnormal Pap will require a repeat Pap test to look for the presence of precancerous cells.
Women between the ages of 30 to 65 should get a cervical cancer screening every 5 years. Once a woman reaches 65 years old, she usually won’t need to undergo cervical cancer screenings any longer. Women at high risk for cervical cancer may need to come in more often for screenings. This is something that you can discuss with your gynecologist during your first screening or next annual wellness exam.
Are there other ways to prevent cervical cancer?
Along with getting routine cervical cancer screenings your OBGYN can also provide a way to protect young women from contracting HPV, a common STI that is also the leading cause of cervical cancer. The HPV vaccine is often recommended for young women around the age of 11 or 12.
This vaccine can be administered to women between the ages of 13 and 26 who have not contracted HPV. The vaccine comes in three doses and it protects against the strains of HPV that are most likely to cause cervical cancer. Even if women have received the HPV vaccine they should still come in for routine screenings and checkups.
Whether you want to learn more about the HPV vaccine or you need to schedule your annual checkup and Pap smear, turn to your OBGYN today to take an active interest in your reproductive health.
The team at OC Women’s Care knows that Well Women Exams are the foundation for wellness, disease identification and management, as well as a key component to promoting a healthy life. Healthy living and early detection of disease can increase the length of your life as well as your quality of living. To ensure you are staying as healthy as possible, have a annual Well Woman Exam. This exam not only makes sure you are healthy, but also gives you a chance to speak with your OBGYN about any questions or concerns you may have about your feminine health.
The Well Woman Exam
The Well Woman Exam generally consists of a pelvic examination and a breast examination. The pelvic examination includes inspection of the external genitalia, a speculum examination of the vagina and cervix and a bimanual examination of the uterus, cervix, and adnexa. Depending on the woman’s age, it may also include a Pap smear.
Please note that the guidelines for Pap smears have changed during the recent years and even though annual exams are recommended on yearly basis, these exams may or may not include this test.
Experts recommend that women begin having yearly wellness visits starting between ages 13 and 15. The Well Woman Exam during adolescent years usually focuses on patient education rather than pelvic examination. These visits during adolescent years are crucial to form a bond between the patient and the OBGYN and address any issues that this age group may have. Pap smears are not indicated before the age of 21. Once a woman has become sexually active, it is important to begin and continue having annual wellness exams.
Another important part of the Women’s Wellness Exam is the clinical breast exam (CBE) performed by your OBGYN. According to the American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG), the American Cancer Society and the National Comprehensive Cancer Network, CBEs are recommended every one to three years for women ages 20–39. Self Breast Exams are encouraged and recommended on a monthly basis, as well. It is also recommended that women age 40 and older have an annual CBE and annual mammograms. A mammogram can be conducted as a screening for breast cancer or as a diagnostic test for lumps or other symptoms.
Start the Year Off Right With a Well Woman Exam
Dr. Sedaghat and her team at OC Women’s Care are here to help women with their healthcare needs beginning with adolescence, through the reproductive and menopausal years to post-menopause. As experts in the field, the team at OC Women’s Care understands that a Well Woman Exam is an important part of a woman’s health care. We encourage every woman to see her gynecologist on a yearly basis. Routine gynecological care can help prevent disease and may be useful in the early detection of cancer. For those who are sexually active, a Well Woman Exam can ensure you are using the best form of contraception, or can make your pregnancy and childbirth easier. Start the New Year off right by scheduling your Well Woman Exam with Dr. Sedaghat today.
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