Urinary tract infections (UTIs) are quite common in women. They are usually caused by E. coli bacteria that can travel up the urethra after urination or after sexual intercourse. However, it’s important to note that UTIs are not sexually transmitted diseases (STDs). If you suspect that you might have a UTI, you can visit a gynecologist near you in Arlington Heights for a proper diagnosis. After a gynecologic exam, your provider can recommend appropriate treatment options to reduce your risk of complications and improve your comfort level.
When you go to your appointment with the gynecology provider, be sure to inform him or her about all of the symptoms you’re experiencing and how severe they are. The main symptoms of a UTI are urinary symptoms. You may notice a feeling of pressure in your bladder. Even though you may feel as though you have to urinate, you may pass little to no urine. When you do urinate, you may experience pain or a burning sensation. Your urine may be unusually cloudy or foul-smelling. Some women may experience bright pink or red urine, which is an indicator that there is blood present. A UTI can also result in pelvic pain.
Gynecology providers have identified certain symptoms that are associated with infections of certain parts of the urinary tract. For example, women with infections of the urethra, known as urethritis, will typically experience burning and discharge with urination. Women with bladder infections, or cystitis, are more likely to experience pelvic pressure, bloody urine, frequent and painful urination, and discomfort of the lower abdomen. Occasionally, the bacteria that cause UTIs may enter into the kidneys, which is a condition known as acute pyelonephritis. If this occurs, women may experience symptoms such as nausea and vomiting. They may display a high fever with shaking and chills. Upper back and side pain is also common.
Promptly treating a UTI with help from a gynecology provider can reduce the risk of developing complications from it. In women who are pregnant, a UTI may increase the risk of premature delivery and low birth weight. When the infection affects the kidneys and it is not treated with antibiotics, women may develop permanent kidney damage. Chronic kidney disease can cause symptoms such as fatigue, nausea, sleep problems, and muscle cramps.
Menopause is a natural and inevitable transition for every woman, but it is often accompanied by unpleasant side effects. Women in Arlington Heights who are of menopause age often experience hot flashes and night sweats during perimenopause. These problems can interfere with healthy sleep and daytime comfort. Women may experience unusual changes in mood. The recognition that menopause is occurring can cause some women to experience anxiety or depression.
Additionally, menopause is typically accompanied by vaginal dryness, which can cause painful intercourse. Some women may experience frequent or occasional urinary incontinence due to the loss of elasticity in the urethra and the weakening of the pelvic floor muscles. Urinary tract infections (UTIs) may occur. A woman’s hair can become drier and some women report the loss of scalp hair. These health issues can be troubling, but a doctor or midwife can provide effective menopause management guidance. Throughout perimenopause, it’s common for women to experience irregular periods. They may only occur every two to four months for some women. Menopause has officially begun when menstruation has ceased for 12 consecutive months.
There are many types of birth control available to women, but most of them are temporary and rely on the use of hormones. If you’re looking for a non-hormonal, permanent type of birth control, consider talking to your doctor in Arlington Heights about family planning with Essure®. Essure® is a safe, effective alternative to tubal ligation for women who are positive that they do not wish to have children. It’s a nonsurgical procedure that hundreds of thousands of women have already undergone.
Before deciding whether Essure® is right for you, you can consult your doctor to learn more about it. You should be aware that this procedure is irreversible. This birth control procedure involves placing a small, flexible insert into each of the fallopian tubes. This causes a natural barrier to develop around the inserts, which prevents sperm from fertilizing an egg . Your doctor will need to review your medical history to make sure it’s safe for you to receive this type of birth control. Women who have a nickel allergy may have adverse reactions to the insert material. If you decide to go forward with the procedure, you’ll schedule an office appointment for a day not long after your period ends.
Essure® can be placed in the healthcare provider’s office, since it is a nonsurgical procedure. Your doctor will insert a hysteroscope into the vagina, through the cervix, and into the uterus. The hysteroscope allows your doctor to see the openings of the fallopian tubes. The Essure® inserts are then passed through the device and into the tubes. You may experience some mild discomfort or cramping during and after the procedure. Women often describe the side effects as being similar to what is normally experienced during menstruation.
The recovery period for Essure® placement is minimal. Most women can return home in about 45 minutes and they usually return to their normal activities within one to two days. Protection against pregnancy does not occur immediately with this procedure. It takes time for the scar tissue to form a natural barrier against sperm. You’ll return to the office in about three months and your doctor will use X-rays or ultrasound images to confirm whether you are protected from pregnancy. Some women may need a second confirmation test at the six-month mark.
When a successful pregnancy seems to be elusive, the holiday season can become difficult to bear. The increased focus on family and children can bring closer scrutiny on your own pregnancy difficulties. If you aren’t already receiving infertility care from an Ob/Gyn in Arlington Heights, consider booking an appointment. Infertility counseling and treatment can help you feel more empowered about the situation.
Let Yourself Say “No”
It can be difficult to turn down holiday invitations, but you may want to consider being selective about your plans this year. Consider attending get-togethers where children will not be the focus, such as office potlucks. Of course, you’ll likely be expected to socialize with your close family, but you might prefer to limit your contact with your extended family this year. Simply send a holiday card along with your regrets; no explanation is necessary.
Develop a Prepared Answer
Some women who are struggling to achieve a pregnancy aren’t quite sure how to answer questions like, “So when are you and Bill going to have kids?” To avoid being thrown off-guard, prepare your answer in advance. You might offer a humorous response that discourages further inquiries, such as “We’re just practicing right now,” or “We’re not quite sure how to do that yet.” It’s unlikely that the person inquiring about your pregnancy status will want to continue the conversation and he or she will likely get the hint that pregnancy is not a welcome discussion. After giving your response, you can safely change the topic.
Spend Time Helping Others
Even if you successfully navigate awkward social situations, you might find it hard to be alone with your own thoughts, especially if you’re dreaming of all of the cute baby toys you might like to buy. Take your mind off of parenthood for a while and find a volunteer opportunity in your community. Spend some time with the elderly at a nursing home or hospital, volunteer to drive cancer patients to treatments, or serve meals to those who are less fortunate. Helping others in need is a sure way to lift your own spirits and get your mind off that elusive pregnancy for a little while.
VBAC—or vaginal birth after Cesarean—is a complex and controversial topic that all mothers face if they become pregnant after a C-section. Although doctors once thought that giving birth vaginally was too dangerous after a C-section, many obstetricians now recommend it. There is no single right answer for every woman. If you’re interested in VBAC, talk to your obstetrician in Arlington Heights about your preferences for giving birth and what is realistic for you. Here is what you need to know about the risks of VBAC and factors to consider when making your choice.
The Risks of VBAC
The biggest risk of VBAC is uterine rupture. During a vaginal delivery, the incision from the previous C-section could reopen, which could put the life of both mother and baby in jeopardy. Fortunately, uterine rupture is rare. Depending on the location of the initial incision, uterine rupture occurs in about 1.5% of VBAC cases . However, the stakes are so high that obstetricians may be reluctant to accept VBAC as an acceptable birth plan if there are other risk factors in place. For instance, uterine ruptures are more common after multiple C-sections and in women who are older. The risk of rupture is also greater if a woman must be induced.
Deciding if VBAC Is Right for You
Your obstetrician will review your birth options with you in full, including the idea of VBAC. If VBAC is your preference, your doctor will consider several different factors, including your age, your pre-existing health conditions, the size of your baby, and how many C-sections you’ve had in the past, before deciding if it is safe for you. To be eligible for a VBAC, you generally must have no uterine scars except for those from a past C-section, and you can’t have the reason for your previous C-section present in this pregnancy. The baby must also be head down and a size that is appropriate for vaginal delivery.
Menopause is a part of life for all women as they transition out of their childbearing years. During menopause, women stop ovulating and experience a significant drop in estrogen levels that can cause a wide range of symptoms. Fortunately, it is possible to manage your menopause symptoms in Arlington Heights with the help of your gynecologist.
Menopause typically occurs between the ages of 45 and 50, though the range varies significantly. During menopause, the hormonal changes can cause hot flashes, mood swings, weight gain, night sweats, sleep disturbances, and loss of bone tissue. A gynecologist can help to manage these symptoms with hormone replacement therapy and advice for lifestyle changes that can keep uncomfortable symptoms in check.
Osteoporosis is characterized by weak, brittle bones that are at a high risk of fracturing due to falls or even mild physical trauma like coughing. It’s often thought that osteoporosis is inevitable for women who are of menopause age . And indeed, the work of preventing osteoporosis should ideally begin well before a woman enters menopause. However, it’s never too late to begin improving the health of your bones, even if you’ve already begun to experience menopause symptoms. To get started, talk to your provider about having a healthy menopause in Arlington Heights.
Healthy nutrition is a cornerstone of osteoporosis prevention. For a well-balanced diet, women should choose a variety of vegetables, fruits, whole grains, lean proteins, and low-fat or nonfat dairy products. A well-balanced diet can help women under 50 get 1,000 milligrams of calcium every day. Older women should aim for 1,200 milligrams of calcium daily for bone health. Vitamin D is also important for building strong bones. Women who are 70 or younger should get 600 units of vitamin D daily, while those who are older should get 800 units daily.
Regular physical activity is essential at every stage of life. Weight-bearing exercise strengthens bones as well as muscles. Some good examples of weight-bearing exercises include walking, stair climbing, jogging, tennis, dancing, yoga, and hiking. Strength training with weights or resistance bands is also a smart idea.
In addition to eating well and exercising regularly, you can make other healthy lifestyle choices to reduce your risk of osteoporosis. These include not smoking and limiting your alcohol consumption. Smoking is significant for bone health because it inhibits the ability of the bones to absorb calcium by interfering with the way the body uses vitamin D. Smoking also lowers a woman’s estrogen levels. At menopause, a woman’s estrogen levels have already begun declining considerably. Smoking will worsen this effect and further increase the risk of osteoporosis. Additionally, it’s widely recommended that women consume no more than one alcoholic beverage per day, if any. Consuming more alcohol than this may increase your risk of osteoporosis because it can act on the liver in a way that interferes with the activation of vitamin D. Alcohol can also affect the absorption of calcium.
Fairly early in your pregnancy, you will have to decide whether you want to work with a midwife in Arlington Heights or an obstetrician. There is no “right” or “wrong” decision; choose the path that feels right to you. Many women select a midwife because these professionals provide woman-centered care. The role of a midwife is to support the body’s natural ability to give birth and to honor the labor preferences of the mother.
You can hear more about the advantages of working with a midwife by watching this video. It’s presented by a woman who chose a midwife for the birth of her son. She explains that she enjoyed the personalized attention and the way the midwife fully honored her birth plan.
It’s not unusual for a woman to put her family’s needs ahead of her own. Yet, a strong foundation of self-care is crucial for every woman. If you have not yet chosen a physician to care for your healthcare needs, you might consider visiting a midwife for gynecology services near Arlington Heights. Midwifery includes providing annual well woman exams for preventive wellness.
Your annual well woman exam will include a check of your vital signs, review of changes to your medical history, and evaluation of any health issues you may have noticed. You’re likely to have a gynecology exam, including a pelvic exam and Pap test. Your healthcare provider may perform a breast exam. All of these examinations and evaluations are designed to detect potential changes in your health status . For instance, a Pap test can detect abnormal changes of the cervix and a breast exam may detect unusual lumps or other changes of the breasts. It is always preferable to detect possible health problems as early as possible. If necessary, your doctor may refer you for further testing or evaluation by another medical specialist.
Another important component of preventive women’s health services is patient counseling. By scheduling an annual well woman exam, you can facilitate your access to important health information. Your provider can answer any questions you may have about your wellness and offer guidance on making wise lifestyle decisions. If you have a chronic health condition, your provider can help you continue to manage it properly. During your well woman exam, you might discuss smoking cessation methods, alcohol use, nutritional choices, physical activity, birth control, and other issues that may apply to you. A well woman exam can be an empowering experience that guides you in making informed decisions for your wellness.
Before your well woman exam concludes, your doctor may provide healthcare recommendations. For example, you may benefit from receiving immunizations or booster shots, undergoing a mammogram, or having a bone density scan. You can also receive guidance on follow-up care for any conditions you may have.
- Northwest Professional OB/GYN
- Dr. Karen L. Collins
- Birth Control
- Birth Control Pills
- High-Risk Pregnancy
- Women's Health
- Zika Virus
- Midwife Care
- Annual Woman Exam
- Infertility Treatments
- Essure sterilization
- hormonal problems
- Dr. Richard Levy
- Well Woman Exam
- Dr. Chris Butler