HEALTH & WELLNESS
Most Common Sexual Health Questions Women Have, Answered
Want to get answers to sexual health questions that have lingered in your mind for long? Well, you aren’t alone. Many women struggle with getting the right answers for their sexual health.
Whether you want to know about irregular periods, family planning techniques, or even your general sexual health, we got you covered.
When Should I Consider My Periods Abnormal?
You’ve probably observed something unusual with your periods, and you are not sure what it means exactly. Well, it is important to understand where the problem might be coming from. You can have irregular periods for normal reasons. For example, if you’ve experienced an absence of periods when breastfeeding, it shouldn’t bother you since it is normal.
However, you may need to get checked by your gynecologist if you experience the following problems:
You’ve missed your periods for more than 90 days:
If this is your case, you could be suffering from amenorrhea. A few exceptions to this include breastfeeding women, those going through menopause, and pregnant women. If you do not belong to any of these groups, then there could be a problem and you should consult with your doctor.
When you’re no longer able to track your cycle, then there is a problem. Some women may get their menstruation period just a few days after the start of the cycle. Worse still, they can get it multiple times within the cycle which may lead to problems.
Excessive pain during periods:
Usually, women will experience discomfort during their periods. But this should be manageable. If the cramps are extremely painful and prolonged, then you need to talk to your gynecologist. In some cases, women with endometriosis complain of such pains.
However, you should NEVER come to a conclusion before a professional diagnosis is carried out by a competent doctor.
Periods that Last for More than Seven Days:
If you have heavy bleeding and it has exceeded seven days, you should seek help. It could be a case of abnormal uterine bleeding which needs immediate treatment before it affects the functionality of the uterus.
If you’re experiencing any of these problems, you need to monitor your sexual health closely. If in doubt about what is happening, then you shouldn’t hesitate to consult your doctor.
Should I Clean My Vagina?
The vagina has internal mechanisms of cleaning itself. It produces secretions to aid in the cleaning process. However, the vulva and the external region around the vagina needs a gentle cleaning. Here are a few tips for cleaning it:
Avoid Using Perfumed Soaps and Antiseptics:
Your vagina is rich in healthy bacteria. If you use these soaps, you’re likely to interfere with their balance which will adversely affect your sexual health. Generally, you should avoid using soap. If you must, then ensure that you use unperfumed soap.
Never Use Vaginal Douches:
You’ve probably seen enticing commercials advertising the use of douches in vaginal cleaning. But are they healthy? Well, you should avoid using them since they have the potential to disrupt the bacterial balance in your vagina.
Don’t Use Vaginal Deodorants and Scented Wipes: Just like the douches, these substances will interfere with the natural pH of your vagina and disrupt the growth of beneficial bacteria. If this happens, your vagina will make it uncomfortable for your partner during sex.
If you avoid these, then you’ll successfully keep your vagina clean and healthy. Whenever you’re cleaning the vagina, ensure that you treat it delicately. You’ll achieve this by using a soft material and warm water. Also, do not feel overburdened to clean it many times.
In fact, once daily is an ideal frequency which will ensure a balance between cleanliness and a healthy vagina.
Why I Am Having Painful Sex?
Pain during sex can cause problems in relationships. This abnormal occurrence is primarily caused by insufficient lubrication. Most of the times, this may occur due to tension and the absence of romantic foreplay.
However, it’s normal to have moderate pain if you’re experiencing penetration for the first time. To avert this problem, always ensure that you’re psychologically and emotionally prepared to have sex. Also, you can use vaginal lubrication to ease penetration.
If the problem persists, you may talk to your gynecologist to rule out any severe condition.
Is it Okay to Have Sex When Pregnant?
Having sex during pregnancy is absolutely safe. The fetus is cushioned by amniotic fluid and has many other protective measures. Also, the contraction that you get during orgasm is different from labor pain, and thus, there are no risks of preterm birth.
However, the doctor may advise against sex when you’re at high risk of miscarriage, you’re having vaginal bleeding, or you’re carrying twins. If your doctor advises against it, then you should abstain from sex.
After How Long Can I Have Sex After Giving Birth?
Having sex after childbirth is solely dependent on you. There exists little harm in having sex just a few days after delivery. However, the hormonal changes during pregnancy and delivery may cause some discomfort months after labour.
If that happens, you should just wait until when you’re comfortable. Most healthcare officials recommend a period of 4-6 weeks after delivery. If you decide to have sex despite the discomfort, you can use a lubricant and other self-devised techniques to enhance comfort.