Women can face a number of gynecological issues at various stages of their life. This includes irregular periods, painful periods, infertility, uterine cysts, impotency and frizidity. According to Ayurveda, most of these issues arise from an unhealthy diet and lifestyle that disturbs the balance of doshas. The symptoms exhibited thus depend on which of the three doshas; vata, pitta or kapha is aggravated and which is lowered. This, in turn, means that to treat these gynecological issues, Ayurvedic doctors attempt to correct the balance of doshas through lifestyle changes and herbal remedies.
Panchakarma treatment can also be very helpful in treating gynecological issues. This involves five different types of treatments based on the patient’s complaint and overall health.
Women’s physiologic needs are somewhat different from men. Since they have an altogether different build and physiologic processes they also have a different nutritional need compared to men. Women in different age groups need a number of minerals and vitamins in higher quantities than men in the same age group. Here are some of the most important minerals and vitamins for women.
Calcium is essential for strong bones, healthy muscles, and more in both men and women. However, it is all the more essential for women since they start losing bone after menopause. They need to get enough calcium throughout their lives so that they don’t suffer from porous bones and problems associated with it. You need to build a sustainable bone density within 19 to 30 years of age since you are invariably going to lose some as you age and cross menopause. If the diet is not enough, you may consider supplements but with medical advice. Dairy products, calcium-fortified juices, beans, cereals, almonds, leafy greens, salmon they all deliver a good amount of calcium.
Vitamin D is also essential for healthy bones and women tends to get porous bones as they age. It may also reduce the risk of some cancers and heart diseases. But the significance of Vitamin D lies in the fact that it promotes calcium absorption. Without Vitamin D, calcium-rich diet and supplements would not be of any use. One can get vitamin D in sea fishes like tuna and salmon, fortified milk, fruit juices, cereals etc. One also needs to get enough of sunshine since vitamin D is made in the skin on exposure to sunlight.
Iron helps increase hemoglobin that in turn enhances the number of red blood cells in the blood. This keeps blood healthy. Women undergo heavy menstrual bleeding, and to counter that they need healthy blood level. Women also need healthy blood level since it is through the blood that the fetus derives all the nutrition. So they need iron-rich diets and/or iron supplements. If they don’t get enough iron, they may suffer from anemia. The best sources of Iron are animal sources since the iron found in animal meat is heme iron, which is easily assimilated by the body.
Women in the reproductive age group need to take Folate, a type of Vitamin B, that helps in the development of the fetus and reduces the risk of congenital problems like spina bifida in children. One can get enough Folate in brown rice, dark green vegetables, sprouts, spinach, green beans, broccoli, potatoes etc. You can also get it in fortified cereals and bread. However, pregnant women or those desiring to get pregnant need to add folate in the form of supplements in their regimen. For pregnant and breastfeeding women the requirement of folate shots up.
Magnesium supports a number of bodily functions in both men and women, but its significance for women lies in its ability to promote strong bones and preventing bone loss. This is why it is very important for women above 40 years of age when the risk of osteoporosis increases.
Excess bleeding or menorrhagia is a common kind of abnormal bleeding occurring at the time of menstruation. Menorrhagia causes more blood loss which leads to anaemia. Fatigue and breathlessness are common symptoms of anaemia.
Symptoms of excess bleeding
A few of the common symptoms of excessive bleeding are:
Causes of excess bleeding
Treatment for excess bleeding
Several treatments are available to treat heavy bleeding during menstruation. Choosing the right one mainly depends on the reasons that cause heavy bleeding.
To conclude, proper diagnosis, choosing the right treatment for excess bleeding at menses needs to be done urgently as it affects the overall health of the women suffering from it.
Adolescence is characterized by the spurt in growth, a period in which growth occurs really fast. During this time, physical changes affect the nutritional needs of the body, while lifestyle changes might affect eating habits along with the choices of food. On the other, Nutrition is equally important for all those who are pregnant as, during pregnancy, a woman's body goes through a number of physical and hormonal changes. Hence, the way one nourishes her body during this phase will affect one's health as well as her baby's.
Importance of Nutrition for Adolescent Girls
It is the spurt in growth that tends to occur in adolescence that creates an increase in the demand for energy as well as nutrients. The important set of nutrients that require to increase during adolescence include energy, protein and calcium.
Let us briefly look into how each of them is important for adolescent girls:
*Energy: Adolescents require additional energy for their growth and activity. They can meet up the requirements by having various healthy foods like lean protein sources, dairy products containing low fat, whole grains, fruits and vegetables.
*Protein: Protein requirements of adolescent girls are mainly determined by the amount of protein they require for maintaining lean body mass. Protein is important both for growth and maintenance of muscle. Adolescents usually require somewhere between 45 and 60 gm of protein every day. They can get that through chicken, eggs, beef, pork, dairy products and some vegetables.
*Calcium: An adequate amount of calcium intake is necessary for developing strong and dense bones during the adolescent stage. Milk provides the highest amount of calcium in the diets of adolescents, followed by cheese, ice cream and frozen yoghurt.
**Iron: Adolescent girls require adequate amount of iron intake on a daily basis. Some of the iron-rich foods are Tofu, Tempeh, Natto, Soybeans, Lentils, Other Beans and Peas, Nuts and Seeds, Leafy Greens, Tomato Paste, Potatoes and more.
Nutritional Requirements for Pregnant Women
Pregnant women go through a number of physical as well as hormonal changes. Hence, nourishment plays a crucial role during this time, which will have an effect on the health of women and well as their on their babies.
-Women must make sure to eat a healthy, balanced diet, which will help them stay healthy all through their pregnancy.
-The food that they have turns out to be the main source of nourishment for babies. Thus it is critical to take those foods that are rich in nutrients.
An easy way to ensure that they are getting all the required nutrients is to have different foods from each of the food groups every day. Each and every food group has something to offer for the body. For instance:
The shrinking back of the uterus to its natural shape and size may lead to the occurence of afterpains. It usually happens while breastfeeding as oxytocin, the hormone which encourages the uterus to contract is released during feeding.
The CO2 Laser Treatment was first used for the treatment of gynecological disorders in 1973. It was used for treating gynecological disorders including cervical intraepithelial neoplasia and microsurgery of the fallopian tube. Gynecological disorders like stress urinary incontinence, vaginal atrophy, and pelvic floor dysfunction are becoming very common these days. Nowadays, doctors practice Laser
Treatment to cure such problems.
In Laser Treatment, the laser beam is applied only to the affected tissue and has minimal impact on the non-target tissue. It is different from traditional technology and involves minimal thermal damage through laser beam on the internal organs. It is a safe and effective way to cure gynecological problems without the need for open surgery. Laser treatment is also used in the field of cosmetic gynecology for treating various conditions. These techniques involve Vaginal Rejuvenation, Labiaplasty, and Vaginoplasty.
Benefits of Laser Treatment in Gynecology
In the delicate surgeries like laparoscopy and hysteroscopy, the surgeons need to make sure that the laser beam penetration is minimum and not causing damage to the tissues of the internal organ. However, in the case of the CO2 Laser Treatment, the laser beams are very gentle. They are balanced with optimal thermal control and are precise so that the non-target areas are safe.
Some of the benefits of Laser Treatment in Gynecology are:
● The laser method is minimally invasive.
● The impact is restricted to the target tissue only.
● The post-surgery healing time is less.
● Minimum damage to healthy tissues.
● Fewer chances of recurrence of the disease.
● Minimal scarring.
● Simple and requires a few steps only.
● If the abdominal surgeries are coupled with laser technology, it will help surgeons to treat the lesions and reduce the chances of recurrence.
Laser Approach Used for Disease
Laser treatment in gynecology is used to treat the disease like
● Stress Urinary Incontinence: IncontiLase Laser Treatment is used to treat this disease. It involves the tightening of irradiated tissues to gain normal continence.
● Pelvic Organ Prolapse: ProlapLase Laser Treatment is used to treat this disease. It involves tightening or narrowing of the diameter of the vaginal cavity and strengthening of the vaginal walls.
● Genitourinary Syndrome of Menopause: RenovaLase Laser Treatment is used to treat this problem. It involves vascularization of the vaginal wall to improve fluid content and provides relief from dryness, irritation, and burning.
● Abdominal Problems: The laser technology, when coupled with the Laparoscopy procedure, is used for abdominal surgeries. The procedure helps in less thermal damage to the tissues and more control over the target area. The surgeon can monitor the penetration to reduce the damage.
● Endometriosis: Laser Treatment is very popular to treat the underlying disease like Endometriosis.
Laser Treatment is a minimally invasive procedure to treat gynecological problems. The technique causes less damage to the surrounding healthy tissues while treating the problem. It can be opted for treating many gynecological problems; however, it is advisable to consult a doctor before going for this treatment.
As a woman goes through life, her hormonal levels change quite dramatically and this can be quite impactful. However, sometimes the impact is not a good one! This can be said to be the cause when it comes to dysfunctional uterine bleeding. This sort of bleeding occurs when the levels the hormones are at cause the menstrual cycle of the woman to become erratic.
Understanding the Diagnosis
When it comes to the diagnosis of an issue such as this, the process must include the ruling out of other more serious problems such as fibroids, a miscarriage, or even cancer which has affected the cervix or the uterus of the woman.
A doctor, post-ruling out these situations, will inform the patient, if dysfunctional uterine bleeding is what is being experienced. When it comes to the matter of how dysfunctional uterine bleeding is to be dealt with, it can be said that the best thing which is to be done is to sit down with the doctor and have a comprehensive chat with respect to what the solutions which are available at hand are.
Dysfunctional uterine bleeding is something which can mar a woman’s daily life, but it really needs not to be the case!
Generally identified as a rare and uncommon phenomenon, vaginal cancer most often occurs in the cells present in the outer lining of the vagina, also called the birth canal. Although primary vaginal cancer is rare and unusual, there are various other types of vaginal cancer that originate elsewhere in the body but have spread over to your vagina.
Depending upon the nature of origin, vaginal cancer can be divided into the following types:
1. Vaginal adenocarcinoma, beginning in the glandular cells on the surface of your vagina
2. Vaginal sarcoma, developing in the connective tissue cells and multiple cells lining the walls of your vagina
3. Vaginal squamous cell carcinoma, originates in the squamous cells lining the surface of the bacteria
4. Vaginal melanoma, developing in melanocytes, the pigment-producing cells in your vagina
As vaginal cancer progresses from one stage to the next, you may experience any one of the following signs and symptoms:
1. Diluted, watery vaginal discharge
2. Painful urination
4. Odd cases vaginal bleeding, for instance, after menopause or after intercourse
5. Formation of lumps in your vagina
6. Frequent and regular urination
7. Pelvic pain
Normally, cancer develops when healthy cells undergo genetic mutations, subsequently leading to the uncontrollable growth of abnormal cells. Cancer cells are known to break off from pre-existing tumors and can easily spread everywhere, in what is referred to as metastasize.
Beyond the natural process of development, here are a few factors which may further contribute to the growth of cancerous cells:
1. Increasing age
2. Vaginal intraepithelial neoplasia
3. Exposure to miscarriage prevention drugs
Long term outcomes of increasing environmental pollution via air, water and food include cancer, congenital birth defects in baby, adverse pregnancy outcomes, infertility.
So what can you do?
1) Get yourself screened for cancer (paps smear, breast cancer screening)
2) Annual medical check-up
3) Start your family early. Don't wait too long after your marriage to start your family
4) Discuss about methods of contraception with your gynaecologist and choose one, rather than going for abortions for unwanted pregnancy.
5) Regular consultation with your gynaecologist during your pregnancy.
Female sterilization is a surgical procedure to prevent pregnancy permanently. It is suitable for women who do not have plans to give birth in future. The procedure works by blocking the fallopian tubes and preventing the ovum from reaching the sperm and becoming fertilized.
Is female sterilization right for me?
There is no hard and fast rule when it comes to female sterilization. Anybody can opt for this surgery. However, women who either do not want to have any more children or do not plan to conceive at all should only consider it. Since this is a permanent procedure, keep in mind that once you decide to get sterilized, the process cannot be reversed.
Usually, women above the age of 30 are considered the best candidates for female sterilization.
How does female sterilization work?
Female sterilization works by blocking the ova (eggs) from moving down the fallopian tubes. The fallopian tubes link the ovary to the uterus (womb). Due to the blockage of the fallopian tubes, the ova cannot reach the sperm and so fertilization is not possible. Since the eggs are not fertilized, there is no chance of you getting pregnant. However, under the normal course of action, the ovary will still release ova but your body will absorb these naturally.
What are the steps to the procedure?
• The surgeon may apply clips- titanium or plastic clamps- to block the fallopian tubes
• He/she may apply rings to clamp the fallopian tubes together. For this, the surgeon will pull a small loop of the tubes through a silicon ring and clip them shut.
• The surgeon may choose to tie up, cut out or remove a portion of the fallopian tubes
If the procedure is carried out surgically, the surgeon will make a cut either near the belly button or just above the pubic hairline. This is a minimally invasive surgery wherein the surgeon inserts a thin, long instrument with a camera and light attached on top (a laparoscope) through the incisions to have a clear view of the fallopian tubes. This is a safer and faster procedure. In case blocking of the tubes is not possible, the doctor may recommend complete removal of the fallopian tubes.
What to expect after the operation?
Female sterilization is usually an outpatient procedure. However, if you are under a heavy dose of anaesthesia, you may have to stay back at the hospital for a day or two. You will feel pain for the initial few days, for which your doctor will prescribe you medications. Depending on your overall condition, you can expect to return to your usual activities within a week. Nevertheless, ensure that you do not engage in strenuous physical activities or lift heavy objects for a while at least.
Female sterilization is a permanent way of birth control. Go for it only if you feel you are physically and emotionally ready for the same. In case you have any doubts about the procedure, feel free to discuss in detail with your gynaecologist.