From menstruation and birth control to sexual problems and pain, find out about what affects you uniquely as a woman.
Women have about 450 periods during their lifetimes. Even so, your period can still manage to surprise you, and not just by showing up when you least expect it.
Don't let your period cramp your style each month. Once you know the answers to these eight questions, you'll be able to master your menstrual cycle.
Menstrual cramps are the leading cause of absenteeism in women younger than 30 years. Although over half of women who have menstrual periods experience some discomfort, 10% are temporarily disabled by symptoms.
Heavy or prolonged menstrual periods, or menorrhagia, are the most common type of abnormal bleeding from the uterus.
Mittelschmerz is the pelvic and lower abdominal pain that some women experience during ovulation.
If your menstrual blood varies in color and consistency throughout your monthly period, it's very likely that it's perfectly normal.
There’s a lot of buzz about this eco-friendly alternative to pads and tampons. But what is a menstrual cup?
Periods vary widely from woman to woman. Some periods are punctual, some are unpredictable. On average, a woman gets her period every 21 to 35 days. A period usually lasts about three to five days. Irregular periods may require treatment.
Premenstrual syndrome, commonly called PMS, is a medical condition that has symptoms that affect many women of childbearing age.
Toxic shock syndrome is a sudden, potentially fatal condition. It's caused by the release of poisonous substances from an overgrowth of bacteria called Staphylococcus aureus, or staph. Toxic shock syndrome affects menstruating women, especially those who use super-absorbent tampons.
Toxic shock syndrome requires immediate emergency care in a hospital. If you think you have it, get medical help as soon as possible. Call 911 or get to a hospital emergency room right away.
Your ob-gyn will deal with some of the most important health issues in your life, including birth control, childbirth, and menopause.
When you've been diagnosed with chronic pelvic pain, you and your doctor should work together toward your well-being. Don't be afraid to ask any questions you have about your condition and your care. Here are some important ones to start with.
Many different conditions can cause chronic pelvic pain. The main symptom is pain that lasts for more than six months, but there are usually other symptoms, as well. Understanding your symptoms can help you and your doctor begin to pinpoint the cause or causes of your chronic pelvic pain.
Your pelvic pain may not have an obvious cause. It may take some time and effort to figure it out. There are specialists you can turn to and tests that can be done to determine why you have the pain and what can be done about it.
Learn the leading causes and types of vaginal infections -- and what to do about them.
PID is one of the most serious complications of a sexually transmitted disease in women: It can lead to irreversible damage to the uterus, ovaries, fallopian tubes, or other parts of the female reproductive system, and is the primary preventable cause of infertility in women.
Adenomyosis is a condition in which the inner lining of the uterus (the endometrium) breaks through the muscle wall of the uterus (the myometrium).
Cervicitis is inflammation of the cervix -- the lower end of the uterus that opens into the vagina.
An enlarged uterus can be a symptom of a variety of medical issues. Learn what could cause an enlarged uterus.
Your uterus (or womb) is normally held in place inside your pelvis with various muscles, tissue, and ligaments. Childbirth or difficult labor and delivery can cause these muscles to weaken in some women. Also, as a woman ages and with a natural loss of the hormone estrogen, her uterus can drop into the vaginal canal, causing the condition known as a prolapsed uterus.
Your ob-gyn will deal with some of the most health issues in your life, including birth control, childbirth, and menopause. A number of different conditions, from cysts to tumors, can cause ovarian pain.
Cysts are fluid-filled sacs that can form in the ovaries. They are very common. They are particularly common during the childbearing years.
Pelvic organ prolapse is a condition in which structures such as the uterus, rectum, bladder, urethra, small bowel, or the vagina itself may begin to prolapse, or fall, out of their normal positions.
Women with vulvodynia have chronic vulvar pain with no known cause. Until recently, doctors didn’t recognize this as a real pain syndrome.
Many women have sexual problems, or sexual dysfunction. Learn about it.
It may seem like a minor irritation. But the lack of vaginal moisture can have a huge impact on your sex life. Fortunately, several treatments are available to relieve vaginal dryness.
When a woman has vaginismus, the muscle walls of her vagina contract or spasm in response to attempted insertion,
A hysterectomy is the surgical removal of the uterus (womb). Find out when and why it’s done.
After a hysterectomy, you will have a brief recovery time in the hospital. Your recovery time at home -- before you can get back to all your regular activities -- will vary depending on the procedure you had.
If you have painful periods with excessive bleeding, fibroids, endometriosis, or another pelvic health problem, you should know that there are alternatives to hysterectomy to consider.
You can find cysts just about anywhere on the body, including the vagina. A vaginal cyst is usually located on or under the lining of the vagina.
Most of the time, vaginal discharge is perfectly normal. The amount can vary, as can odor and hue (its color can range from clear to a milky white-ish), depending on the time in your menstrual cycle.
An estimated 20% to 40% of American women between ages 15 and 44 say they use a vaginal douche.
Some objects are designed for use in a woman's vagina. These include tampons, vaginal suppositories, and medications delivered through the vagina. Others are not intended to be inserted and may be placed there accidentally or intentionally.
Learn the reasons your doctor may advise a D&C (dilation and curettage) and what to expect during the procedure.
Vaginoplasty is a procedure that aims to "tighten up" a vagina that's become slack or loose from vaginal childbirth or aging. Labiaplasty changes the size or shape of the labia, typically making them smaller or correcting an asymmetry between them.
Vaginal yeast infections are common. Yeast infections, sometimes called candidiasis, develop where a moist environment encourages growth of the yeast fungus, such as the genitals.
Yeast infection symptoms -- such as vaginal itching, burning, and occasional vaginal discharge -- can also be caused by sexually transmitted diseases and other vaginal infections.
Candida yeast normally live in the vagina. But certain conditions set up an ideal environment for the yeast to "overgrow" out of balance and cause a yeast infection.
Anyone who's had a yeast infection knows the unbearable vaginal itching it can bring. Other vaginal infections share some of the same symptoms, so only your doctor can make a diagnosis by running a lab test on sample fluid and cells from the vagina.
In many cases, you can safely treat a vaginal yeast infection with an over-the-counter medication. You can also try treating a yeast infection at home with these tips for self-care to relieve itching, burning, and other symptoms.
You can treat most vaginal yeast infections with an over-the-counter vaginal cream or suppository. You can buy these nonprescription vaginal creams and suppositories at most large drugstores and supermarkets.
You can treat many yeast infections with over-the-counter creams or suppositories that you can buy at a drugstore. But for some women with severe or persistent infections, a different yeast infection treatment may be needed. If you are unsure or have never had a yeast infection before, see your doctor first.
While you can't always avoid a yeast infection, you can lower your risk of getting one. Follow these guidelines to avoid the itching, burning, and other discomforts.
Recognize these symptoms of a yeast infection, and see your doctor for treatment.
Your doctor may diagnose a vaginal yeast infection based on your description of symptoms and possibly a vaginal exam.
Try these following tips to prevent yeast infections.