Many women lead very busy and hectic lives. We may be caregivers for children and elderly parents. We may have demanding jobs both at home and in the work force. So when something goes awry with our bodies many of us tend to dismiss our symptoms, especially gynecological ones. Although it is more acceptable now to discuss our sexual health, there is still a great reluctance to talk about what is happening with our bodies “down there.” The delay in getting gynecological treatment may be due to fear, lack of awareness of what may indicate a serious problem, and even financial worries of how to pay to see a doctor. We may also think that things will miraculously get better if we just wait. But for a lot of women this waiting can mean suffering needlessly and taking a risk that our condition will worsen. In this post we are going to discuss five gynecological symptoms you should never ignore.
1. Spotting or bleeding in between periods
There are many reasons for spotting or bleeding when you are not having your period including taking birth control pills, hormonal fluctuations, and perimenopause. Most of the time the cause for between period bleeding is not harmful but some reasons may be more serious including an infection, an STD, or even cancer. If you are experiencing spotting or bleeding when you are not having your period, it is strongly advised that you call your doctor to see if you need to come in for an exam.
The following Health Central articles and resources will provide more information about this symptom:
2. Pain during sex
There are some women who do not look forward to having sexual relations because they know they will experience pain. Some women may think this is normal to feel pain during sex. It is not so normal and it may actually indicate that there is an underlying medical problem. Pain during sex can be caused by anything from a lack of lubrication to ovarian cancer. The range is wide as far as potential causes so if you are experiencing chronic pain during sexual intercourse, you need to get checked by your doctor.
For more information on the possible causes for this symptom please read my article, 5 Reasons for Painful Sex.
3. Painful periods
This is probably the one gynecological symptom that most women ignore. Periods are supposed to be painful aren’t they? It is true that menstruation is usually accompanied by cramps and some discomfort. But for some women, a period can render them dysfunctional. There are some women who will miss school or work because their period pain is so intense. In some cases this extreme pain is your body’s way of telling you that something is wrong. Heed the call and see your doctor. Young girls may experience very painful periods when they are just beginning to menstruate with no underlying medical ailment. For older women, some of the possible causes for painful periods can include uterine fibroids, endometriosis, or pelvic inflammatory disease. Whatever the reason for your pain, you don’t need to suffer. There is help and treatment for period pain (dysmenorrhea).