Posts for: May, 2018
Not sure which birth control method is right for you? Our San Dimas, CA OB/GYN, Dr. Richard Williams of Williams Ob/Gyn & Associates, discusses available contraceptive choices.
Barrier birth control
Barrier contraceptive methods keep you from becoming pregnant by preventing sperm from entering your uterus. Barrier methods include diaphragms, condoms, cervical caps, and contraceptive sponges.
The birth control pill is the most well-known hormonal contraceptive, but it's not the only one. Other choices include shots, vaginal rings, implants, one type of intrauterine devices (IUDs), and patches. Hormonal methods stop ovulation from occurring, thin the uterine lining and thicken cervical mucus, which makes it hard for sperm to make their way from the vagina to the uterus.
T-shaped IUDs are inserted into your uterus during a minor procedure in our San Dimas office. IUDs typically last 10 years before they are replaced, but can be removed earlier if you decide that you're ready to have a baby.
Tubal ligations are used to permanently prevent pregnancy in women. During the surgical procedure, the Fallopian tube are cut and tied off or blocked. As a result, eggs can no longer travel to your uterus.
Natural family planning
Natural family planning involves tracking your menstrual cycle and avoiding sex around ovulation. Although NFP can help you avoid pregnancy, it's much less effective than other birth control methods.
Which contraceptive option is best for me?
The ideal birth control method for you depends on several factors, such as:
- Your Health: Your health may impact your ability to use certain methods, such as hormonal birth control. Hormonal methods generally aren't recommended if you've had a stroke or blood clot in the past or are a smoker. In some cases, hormonal birth control can also worsen migraines.
- Your Memory: Are you confident that you'll remember to take a pill every day or use a condom or diaphragm every time you have sex? If you're concerned that you may forget about birth control, implants, birth control shots or an IUD may increase your confidence in your birth control method.
- Reversibility: If you think you might want to get pregnant in the near future, condoms, cervical caps, or diaphragms may be a better choice than long-term options.
Are you interested in learning more about your birth control options? Schedule an appointment with San Dimas, CA OB/GYN, Dr. Williams of Williams Ob/Gyn & Associates, by calling (909) 599-8677.
Getting older means overcoming many different obstacles as your life and your body change. But you must deal with one that is uniquely female: menopause and the symptoms that come with it. You know the symptoms commonly associated with menopause—hot flashes, night sweats, mood swings, difficulty sleeping, vaginal dryness—but did you know that they are treatable and that menopause doesn’t have to be insurmountable?
If you have moderate to severe symptoms, hormone replacement therapy (HRT) is an effective treatment for hot flashes and can also help elevate vaginal dryness and mood issues. It has traditionally been administered with pills like birth control, but also like birth control it can now be taken through patches, creams, gels, and vaginal rings. If you have not had a hysterectomy, you could be prescribed estrogen and progesterone, called combination HRT. If you have had a hysterectomy, estrogen alone would be prescribed.
Not all women are candidates for HRT. Those who have breast or uterine cancer, blood clots, heart or liver disease, or have had a stroke would be better candidates for the following options.
Vaginal estrogen is a lower dose of estrogen that comes as a cream, tablet, or ring and is placed in the vagina to treat vaginal dryness if you don’t have hot flashes. Vaginal lubricants and moisturizers are non-prescription options to treat dryness as well. Lubricants can help decrease friction and ease intercourse, but be sure to only use water-soluble products designed for the vagina to avoid irritating tender tissue. Moisturizers can improve or maintain vaginal moisture if you have mild vaginal atrophy and can also keep your pH level low, ensuring a healthy vaginal environment. They can also be used regularly with longer-lasting effects than lubricants.
Prescription antidepressant medications are often used to treat mood problems, like depression, with relatively few side effects. They have also been used to treat hot flashes. However, if you are having mood issues, be sure to talk with your doctor to identify the cause and decide on the best treatment.
You’d be surprised how far simple lifestyle changes, like eating a healthy diet and regularly exercising, can go in minimizing menopause symptoms. Wearing light-weight pajamas, using layered bedding that can easily be removed, and using a fan in your bedroom can help with night sweats while keeping a regular sleep schedule and nighttime routine can make falling asleep and staying asleep easier.
The onset of menopause is a big change, and dealing with its symptoms can be daunting. But you don’t have to take on this new phase in your life alone. No matter if you are suffering severe symptoms or you just have some questions of what to expect as you get older, our office is here to help. Call to schedule your appointment today.
OBGYNS recommend that women come in for a postpartum visit approximately 6 weeks after giving birth. Unfortunately, medical reports state that the percentage of women that actually go to these appointments is staggeringly low. Of course, while a woman’s primary focus might be to care for their little one, it’s also important that women are getting the proper care they need to tackle their new role as a mother.
Any woman who has just given birth can tell you just how much pregnancy changes your body. Perhaps it changed it in ways you didn’t even imagine. So it goes without saying that those nine months of changes means that it’s going to take time for your body to bounce back to the way it was pre-baby. If you had a vaginal delivery it’s normal to experience vaginal discharge, urination problems, hemorrhoids, mood swings, hair loss, contractions, and vaginal soreness.
It’s important that you have an OBGYN that you trust to answer your questions and provide you with advice and help when you need it. An OBGYN can also be a wonderful source of emotional and mental support, which can be invaluable for a new mother.
One issue that’s often discussed during the postpartum phase is mood swings. Some women experience the “postpartum blues”, which only lasts a few weeks; however, postpartum depression is characterized by intense feelings of sadness and anxiety that can last up to one year. As you might imagine, postpartum depression can have a profound impact on a woman’s outlook and mood, making it particularly challenging when she has a new baby to take care of. An OBGYN can help provide you with the care you need and, if necessary, offer a referral for a mental health professional that can truly listen to your needs and help you on the road to healing.
Furthermore, if a mother has been diagnosed with a chronic medical condition like diabetes, hypertension, thyroid disorders, or mood disorders prior to pregnancy it’s also important that she has a follow-up visit with her gynecologist after the baby is born to ensure that she is still receiving ongoing maintenance and care for these long-term health problems to keep them in check.
It’s important that all women take postpartum care seriously to ensure that they continue to maintain good physical and mental health. Taking the time to care for yourself is important, even though you have a new baby to take care of. Ensuring that your health is in tip-top shape will allow you to spend more time with your beautiful family.