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How Often Should You See Your Gynecologist

- Friday, January 20, 2012
Most women know that you are supposed to visit your gynecologist after you become sexually active. But the thing is, not all of them know how often they should come back.

So how frequently should you visit your gynecologist?


Annually


You only need to see their gynecologist once a year—you can even make it every three years if you do not encounter any problems related to your vaginal health. However, if you are pregnant, you will need to make regular visits to your OB-GYN throughout the nine months of your pregnancy.

Changes in Menstrual Cycle


When you encounter any irregularities in your menstrual cycle, you should immediately pay a visit to your gynecologist. These irregularities include those instances when your period comes more often than every three weeks, or when you get episodes of bleeding or spotting in between cycles, or when you stop getting your period altogether. Changes in your menstrual cycle could mean pregnancy or abnormal bleeding—both of which must be addressed promptly.

Abnormal Bleeding


As we have just mentioned, any occurrence of abnormal bleeding merits a visit to your gynecologist right away. Also, if you ever experience bleeding during or after sexual intercourse, you should make an appointment with your doctor. Vaginal bleeding could mean injury to your cervix, ovarian cysts, uterine or cervical polyps, fibroids, or even pre-cancer or cancer of the uterus.

Vaginal Pain or Discomfort


You should also visit your gynecologist if you ever experience any unexplainable pain or discomfort in your vaginal area. This includes itching, burning, rawness, aching, throbbing, soreness, and swelling.

Any inexplicable pain or discomfort is usually a sign of vaginal disease or infection. If you are experiencing any of these, see your doctor at once because it could be urinary tract infections, yeast infections, bacterial infections, skin conditions, STDs, or even menopause.

Before and After Menopause


If you suspect that you are nearing menopause, you must also go and see your doctor. Menopause symptoms include menstrual irregularities or cessation, hot flashes, night sweats, mood swings, headaches, vaginal discomfort, and weight gain. Some of these symptoms could also mean pregnancy, so check with your OB-GYN to find out which one it is.

Visiting your gynecologist once you perceive that you are entering menopause is important because being menopausal may put you at a higher risk for certain health conditions.
Once you are postmenopausal, you will still need to go in for regular check-ups—ask your doctor how often you should come in to visit, as this will usually depend on your health history. You also need to come in to get regular preventive screening tests such as pap smears, pelvic exams, and mammograms.

So there you have it. If you are still unsure about how often you need to see your gynecologist or if you have any special circumstances regarding your health that would require more frequent visits, just ask your gynecologist. A trusted doctor who is aware of your medical history will certainly be able to tell you how often you should visit.
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