Many women associate obstetricians/gynecologists with prenatal care and checkups. You may be wondering whether you should still go for regular OBGYN checkups if you are not trying to get pregnant. The answer is that every woman can benefit from regular let's say annual visits to their gynecologists. Here are some things your OBGYN can do for you.
- Through your OBGYN, you can learn about birth control options, and discuss strategies to prevent sexually transmitted diseases. You can also get STD testing through your OBGYN. These services are all available through an old-fashioned family practitioner as well, but a gynecologists will certainly have more knowledge about these issues.
- An OBGYN is great for a preventative pelvic exam, which is recommended once a year.
- Through your OBGYN, you can have access to screening for reproductive cancers, like the Pap smear. This is recommended every two years after age 21, or before that for women and girls who are sexually active.
- If you have problems with irregular period, painful periods, or bleeding in between periods, a gynecologist is the right person to see.
- If you have any pelvic pain, a gynecologist is also the right medical professional to help you find out what is wrong, and how to treat it.
- For a mammogram to screen for breast cancer when you are between 40 and 50 years old.
- For menopausal checkups, including screening for bone density and advice on alleviating menopause symptoms.
Of course, seeing a gynecologist seems like a logical step if you already have a problem (like irregular periods), or if you need access to birth control. But there is certainly a lot to be said for going for regular preventative appointments, as you can see. Identifying any problems you have early on offers many benefits, and if you are going for annual testing for STDs, it is also good to have peace of mind if you had been worrying.