See your doctor about your period if:
During your period, you shed the thickened uterine lining and extra blood through vagina. Your period may not bethe same every month. It may also be different than other women's periods. Periods can be light, moderate, or heavy in terms of how much blood comes out of the vagina. This is called menstrual flow. The length of the period also varies. Most periods last from 3 to 5 days. But, anywhere from 2 to 7 days is normal.
For the first few years after menstruation begins, longer cycles are common. A woman's cycle tends to shorten and become more regular with age. Most of the time, periods will be in the range of 21 to 35 days apart.
Dysmenorrhea - painful periods, including severe cramps. Menstrual cramps in teens are caused by too much of a chemical called prostaglandin. Most teens with dysmenorrhea do not have a serious disease, even though the cramps can be severe. In older women, the pain is sometimes caused by a disease or condition such as uterine fibroids or endometriosis.
For some women, using a heating pad or taking warm baths helps ease their cramps. Some over-the-counter pain medications can also help with these symptoms. They include:
In the United States, the average age for a girl to get her first period is 12. This does not mean that all girls start at the same age. A girl can start her period anytime between ages of 8 and 15. Most of the time, the first period starts about 2 years after breasts first develop. If a girl has not had her first period by age 15, or if it has been more than 2 to 3 years since breast growth started, she should see a doctor.
We maintain our cars, boats, RVs and homes why not your body.
Here is a list of routine health care screenings that are recommended by the US Department of Health and Human Services.
Cervical Cancer - Pap smear every 1 year if you are 21 to 65 years old and have been sexually active. If you are older than 65 and recent Pap smears were normal, you do not need a Pap smear. If you have had a hysterectomy for a reason other than cancer, tou do not need a Pap smear.
Breast Cancer - Usually between the age of 40-50 years old you should start annual mammograms. Mammograms at earlier ages may be necessary based on age, family history, overall health, and personal concerns. Discuss with your health care team whether a mammogram is right for you.
Osteoporosis ( Bone Thinning) - Have a screening test at age 65 to make sure your bones are strong. If you are younger than 65, talk to your health care team about whether you should be tested.
Chlamydia and Other sexually Transmitted Diseases - Sexually transmitted diseases can make it hard to get pregnant, may affect your baby, and can cause other health problems.
Have a screening test for Chlamydia if you are 24 or younger and sexually active. If you are older than 24, talk to your health care team about being screened for Chlamydia. Ask your doctor or nurse whether you should be screened for other sexually transmitted diseases.
HIV - Talk to your health care team about HIV screening if any of these apply to you:
The most common symptoms of a UTI (bladder infection) are urinary frequency and painful urination. Typically the woman will complain that she voids small amounts of urine extremely frequently (several times per hour). She usually also complains that it hurts to urinate. Typically the pain is in the bladder and/or the suprapubic region. Sometimes a vaginitis will also give you painful urination, but in that case, the pain is usually locally on the vulva where the urine touches the skin.
If you think you have a UTI, you should call the doctor as the infection can usually be treated fairly easily with antibiotics.
After you’ve reached the point in the pregnancy where you’ve been feeling the baby move regularly (usually around 24 weeks), you should be concerned if you do not feel the baby move for a significant period of time, or if the movement decreases. Sometimes this is simply a matter of being distracted and not paying attention. If you eat or drink something that will raise your blood sugar and lie down and pay attention, most times you will begin to feel the baby move. If you do not, you should call the office (in the daytime) or come to labor and delivery.
The other time to go to the hospital is if you are in labor. If you are pre-term (before 37 weeks) you should come to the hospital if you are having regular contractions, less than 10 minutes apart, for an hour or more, particularly if accompanied by a change in vaginal discharge. Sometimes Braxton-Hicks contractions can seem pretty regular. If you are not sure, you could try drinking 32 oz of fluid and lying down. If the contractions persist, it would be best to come to the hospital for evaluation.
If you are at term (37 weeks or beyond), you should come to the hospital when the contractions are regular, coming at least every 5 minutes, and persistent for at least an hour. If you had a fast labor last time, you might want to discuss with the doctor when to come to the hospital.
Whether term or pre-term, you should come to the hospital if you experience rupture of membranes or have any significant amount of vaginal bleeding, whether or not you think you’re in labor.
Back pain in pregnancy is common and is caused by loosening of the joints and support ligaments of the pelvis, combined with the extra weight of the pregnancy and the shifts in the center of gravity caused by the pregnancy protruding from the front of your abdomen. There are several things that will help.
Generally, you should ask your doctor if you have any questions about a specific medication. However, certain medications are generally considered safe for use in pregnancy.
Condition - Medications
Pain: Tylenol (Avoid aspirin. Avoid Ibuprofen or Naproxen in the 1st and 3rd trimesters.)
Cold: Chlor-Trimeton, Sudafed (after the 1st trimester and if no history of high blood pressure), Benedryl, Humabid, Robitussin DM
Allergies: Zyrtec, Claritin, Benedryl, Zyrtec-D, Claritin-D
Diarrhea: Kaopectate, Imodium
Heartburn: Maalox, Mylanta, Tums, Rolaids. If antacids don’t work, Zantac, Pepcid AC
Gas and/or bloating: Simethicone (Mylicon, Mylanta anti-gas)
Vaginitis: Monistat, Lotrimin (be gentle with the applicator!)
Constipation: Fiber (Metamucil, Citracil - be sure to use with enough water!), Docusate (Colace, Ducolax), Miralax
Hemorrhoids: Tucks, Preparation H, Anusol
If the above medications do not resolve the problem, or you experience any adverse reaction, you should call the office to be evaluated for the problem. These medications should always be taken according to package directions. Over dosage can have adverse effects on your fetus, even if you feel fine.
Generally, birth control pills are most effective, and easiest to remember if you take them at the same time each day. Also, associating taking your pill with something else you do each day at about the same time will make it easier to remember.
If however, you forget to take your pill on a given day, take it as soon as you remember. If it’s still the same day that the pill was due, there will be only a minor fluctuation in hormone levels and minimal chance of pregnancy.
If however, it’s the next day before you realize you’ve forgotten your pill, you can take the pill you missed, plus the pill for that day. This, however, will increase the risk of ovulation (and pregnancy) due to fairly dramatic hormonal shifts, and you may wish to use a back up method of birth control (such as condoms) for the rest of that cycle of pills.
The first cycle of birth control pills is less effective than subsequent cycles. You may wish to use a back up method of birth control (such as condoms) for that cycle. As mentioned above, you should use a back up if you mess up taking your pills. The other time to consider back up is anytime something may interfere with absorption of the hormones in the pills. Nausea and vomiting, whether or not you see the pill in the vomit, is one example. A case of diarrhea is another. Anytime you take antibiotics, this can also interfere with the absorption of the hormones due to changes in the bacteria in your gut, and it would be safest to use a back up for that cycle.
These are the theoretical and typical use effectiveness ratings of various contraceptive methods. Use effectiveness means their effectiveness as they are actually used, not their theoretical effectiveness. People don’t always use a method 100% correctly. These numbers are based on 1991-1995 data from the 1995 National Survey of Family Growth.
|Method||Pregnancy Rate with Perfect Usage (%)||Pregnancy Rate with Typical Usage (%)|
|Contraceptive Sponge (No Childbirth)||9||16|
|Contraceptive Sponge (With Childbirth)||20||32|
|Fertility Awareness Methods||1-9||25.3|
|Combination birth control pills||0.3||8.7|
|Contraceptive skin patch (Ortho Evra)||0.3||8|
|Contraceptive vaginal ring (Nuvaring)||0.3||8|