There are probably many activities you would rather engage in than your annual visit to the gynecologist. As uncomfortable as this appointment may make you, it is a critical tool for catching and treating illness or disease. You may find a gynecological exam to be embarrassing or distressing. However, your doctor simply wants to provide you with the best possible care to keep you healthy and active. In order to do that, your physician needs you to be honest and relaxed. Check out these eight ways you may be preventing your doctor from giving you the best gynecological care.
8. Canceling Your Appointment
The biggest barrier to gynecological care is a patient who doesn’t show up. You may think that a surprise visit from your period would interfere with a proper exam. However, your doctor should still be able to perform an exam and Pap smear despite the presence of menstrual bleeding. Furthermore, physicians are accustomed to the sight of blood and will not be horrified or disgusted by this occurrence. When you have an appointment on the books, make it a priority to get in and get the yearly visit behind you.
7. Self-Diagnosing Infections
The wide variety of over-the-counter treatments for urinary tract infections and yeast infections may tempt you to diagnose your own symptoms rather than turning to your physician. If you suffer from frequent yeast infections and know how to treat them, those over-the-counter meds may be just fine. However, many urinary tract infections require antibiotic treatment. Holding off and treating yourself with DIY remedies such as cranberry juice may allow the infection to spread to your kidneys. Give your doctor a call if you suspect you have an infection.