Hello ladies. We’ve all been there when something changes “down there” and the great unknown can leave you feeling worried as well as uncomfortable. I know how to take care of you at Express Healthcare, whether you think you may be pregnant or you’re concerned about Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STDs). Here are a few things you should know about your body and how you can be better at listening to it.
First and foremost, everyone looks different. You are a stunning, gorgeous woman, exactly the way you were made. Love your body and it will love you back.
Here is a diagram of your basic anatomy. Keep in mind, there are many variations to a woman’s appearance.
It’s bikini season! The last thing you want are those painful red bumps that you get after shaving. This is a common result of shaving coarse hair found in your groin and armpits. This is most likely due to folliculitis, an infection of the hair follicle. There are some over-the-counter products that may provide relief or prevent these bumps. Here are some handy tips:
- wash before and after with antibacterial soap, such as Hibiclens
- use a fresh, sharp shaving razor
- just trim! no need to shave all the way down to the skin
- after, use a product that has “rubbing alcohol” in the ingredients
- or try a little over-the-counter hydrocortisone cream, do not use more than twice a day
If these simple tricks do not help, you may have developed an infection that can be treated at our urgent care.
Douching and Discharge
Douching is a practice I discourage to all of my patients. Douching can disrupt the pH of your vagina and can leave you susceptible to an infection such as bacterial vaginosis or a yeast infection. Over-the-counter tests for these problems are not reliable nor are they accurate. Having a discharge is very normal, for all women. If you are having a change in your normal discharge or odor, there may be something else going on that needs medical attention.
Sexually Transmitted Diseases
These types of infections can wreak havoc on our bodies by causing Pelvic Inflammatory Disease (PID), infertility, cervical cancer and other complications. If you have had multiple partners or have a new partner, don’t hesitate – you should be tested.
Annual Well-Woman Exam
Just like your yearly check-up, you should have a yearly female check-up in addition. This exam generally includes a Pap Smear and a breast exam. A Pap Smear is recommended beginning at the age of 21, if you are sexually active. It is so important to have your annual well-woman check-up every year. You can utilize this visit with your primary care doctor or gynecologist to discuss contraceptives or any questions you have about your sexual health or well-being
I hope I’ve answered some of your questions. Feel welcome to walk-in or make an appointment to address any concerns you might have. You know where to find us at Express Healthcare in College Park and Greenbelt, MD!