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Dr. Mary Jane Minkin, OB-GYN, Highlights Key Topics Addressed in Annual Visits for Women’s Health Month

NEW HAVEN, Conn. , May 29 /Businesswire/ - In light of Women’s Health Month, Mary Jane Minkin, M.D., OB-GYN, Clinical Professor of Obstetrics, Gynecology, and Reproductive Sciences at Yale University School of Medicine, is shedding light on frequently discussed topics during annual OB-GYN visits. Dr. Minkin, dedicated to women's health and education, emphasizes the importance of these routine check-ups for maintaining overall well-being.

"Approximately 40 percent of women in the U.S. visit their gynecologist annually. Scheduling regular appointments can be intimidating, and many women experience anxiety about serious health discussions. However, regular check-ups are crucial for your well-being,” states Dr. Minkin. “Annual appointments with your OB-GYN are essential for early detection of potential issues, such as cervical or breast cancer, menopause and for managing reproductive health. They also provide an opportunity to discuss concerns like contraception, menstrual irregularities, and sexual health.”

Below, Dr. Minkin outlines some of the common topics that OB-GYNs and gynecological healthcare practitioners discuss with patients during routine appointments.

1. Routine Screenings and Preventive Care

Annual visits are crucial for routine screenings and preventive care, including Pap smears for cervical cancer, mammograms for breast cancer detection, and HPV vaccinations. Early detection and prevention are vital for managing potential health issues. Notably, the US Preventive Services Task Force now recommends that women begin regular mammograms at age 40, supported by data showing a decrease in breast cancer deaths with consistent screening.

2. Menstrual Cycle Concerns

Irregular periods, heavy bleeding, and severe cramps are common topics during annual visits. In fact, as many as 1 in 4 women experience irregular menstrual cycles. We discuss symptoms, potential causes such as hormonal imbalances or underlying conditions, and appropriate treatments to ensure comfort and health.

3. Contraception and Family Planning

Annual appointments are an opportunity to explore various contraceptive options, from birth control pills to IUDs, condoms, and more. We help patients find the best method for their lifestyle and needs. Family planning discussions also include preconception counseling, fertility evaluations, and information about emergency contraception options like Cadence OTC’s Morning after Pill (MAP), which can be used within 72 hours of unprotected sex to help prevent pregnancy before it starts.

4. Sexual Health and Libido

Sexual health is an essential component of a woman's overall well-being. Patients frequently inquire about libido and discomfort during intercourse. To aid in prevention, a high-quality lubricant can reduce pain and enhance pleasure, confidence, and comfort in the bedroom. I recommend Replens Silky Smooth, a silicone-based lubricant that lasts longer than water-based options and is compatible with natural rubber latex, polyisoprene, and polyurethane condoms. We also explore possible causes of pain during sex and decreased libido, address sexually transmitted infections (STIs), and provide a safe space for these discussions and treatments as needed.

5. Menopause and Hormone Replacement Therapy

For women approaching or experiencing menopause, the annual visit is an opportunity to address symptoms such as hot flashes, night sweats, and mood changes. Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT) and other treatments can significantly improve quality of life during menopause. Many of my patients also complain about experiencing vaginal dryness. Aside from HRT, there are many over-the-counter solutions to vaginal dryness available. I always recommend Replens Long-Lasting Moisturizer, which helps replenish vaginal moisture for up to three days.

6. Vaginal Health and Hygiene

Proper vaginal hygiene is crucial for preventing infections and maintaining overall sexual health. Patients are advised to avoid douching and scented products, as the vagina is self-cleaning, and these products can disrupt its natural balance. For patients who experience bacterial imbalances, I recommend an oral probiotic like RepHresh Pro-B to balance yeast and bacteria. For those dealing with vaginal odor due to a pH imbalance, I suggest trying RepHresh Vaginal Gel. Recognizing when something may be “off” with vaginal health is crucial, which is why we take the time to educate patients on how to identify potential issues.

"Remember to come to your appointment with any questions or specific topics you want to discuss. It's okay to do some research beforehand, but I always recommend consulting your healthcare practitioner for the most accurate information," says Dr. Minkin.


STORY TAGS: Oncology, Health, Consumer, Women, Other Health, General Health, United States, North America, Connecticut, Product/Service,

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