2020 has been a doozy of a year. We’ve been practicing social distancing and mask-wearing far longer than most people anticipated. While it is important to protect ourselves and others from a virus we’re still learning about, it is also necessary to continue supporting long-term health via routine exams. At River Oaks Gynecology and Aesthetics, the health and safety of our staff and our patients is of the utmost importance. We have implemented protocols to ensure this.
WHY IS AN ANNUAL WELL-WOMAN EXAM SO IMPORTANT?
An annual well-woman visit with a gynecologist is integral to both physical and emotional health. During these visits, the gynecologist and healthcare team check routine measurements such as blood pressure and weight. Additional screenings also take place to detect diseases that, when caught early, can be treated conservatively. Examples include ovarian, breast, and cervical screenings.
Well-woman visits are also a time to discuss issues like sexually transmitted infections and family planning. Our practice provides a variety of choices in contraception, including short- and long-term birth control methods. The routine annual exams are not focused only on physical screenings but also include discussion of current concerns and life stages. A trusted gynecologist is an excellent resource to discuss:
- Menstruation and menstrual cycle changes
- Pelvic symptoms such as pain
- Sexual or intimacy concerns
- Emotional wellness
- Sleep concerns
HOW OFTEN SHOULD I SCHEDULE A WELL-WOMAN EXAM?
While every woman’s wellness needs are different, and all change over time, well-woman visits are recommended to occur annually. The visit itself provides an ongoing record of health even as the screenings that are performed may vary based on age and unique circumstances. For example, a woman in her twenties may have a cervical cancer screening every 3 years while a woman over the age of thirty may have this screening every 5 years.