Women’s Health Concerns
Next on the calendar is the International Women’s Day Month, which marks the day of celebration and recognition of all women across the globe. The day commemorates the celebrating of the economic, political and social achievements of women of past, present and also the future. -
In this article, we list top twenty health concerns of women, and look at how they are caused and how they can be cared for.
Acne can affect people of any age group and sex. Acne in women is typically observed when there is hormonal fluctuation, usually eight to ten days before menstruation, first pregnancy trimester or three months after delivery.
Good skin and diet care is essential in curbing acne break-outs. Following simple tips like avoiding touching your skin during infection, sun-protection, regular exercising, drinking plenty of water and avoiding high-sugar/ fat diet, go a long way in preventing the spread of acne.
If acne break-out worsens, it can be detrimental to one’s self-esteem. Homeopathic acne treatment works well not just in reducing eruptions and controlling scarring, but also preventing further outbreaks.
Anemia is a condition in which the blood lacks sufficient level of hemoglobin or healthy red blood cells (RBC). Inadequate hemoglobin in the blood cells deprives essential supply of oxygen to the body.
Women are more susceptible to the disease because of loss of blood from menstruation, and during pregnancy. Loss of blood, improper RBC production, and destruction of RBCs are known causes of anemia.
Although there are many forms of anemia, the most common type can be treated with iron supplements and dietary changes.
Arthritis affects thrice as more women than men, and the most common of the arthritis’ types seen in women is rheumatoid arthritis.
This type causes inflammation of prominently joint tissues, resulting in swelling of the joints, stiffening and pain. If left untreated, the disease can lead to destruction of joints and loss of mobility.
Homeopathic Treatment to rheumatoid arthritis is not just safe compared to conventional treatment, but also holistic in its approach. Homeopathy relieves pain, and strengthens body immunity for a healthy life.
Breast and Cervical Cancer
Breast cancer: Stages of breast cancer vary from early, curable breast cancer to metastatic breast cancer.
Symptoms of breast cancer can include: persisting lump in the breast or the underarm, swelling in armpit, pain or tenderness in the breast, flattening of the breast or indentation, a noticeable change in the nipular area or unusual discharge from nipple.
Regular and vigorous aerobic exercise can offer some level of prevention against breast cancer. Not only that, exercising can also be helpful in faster recovery from surgery and tolerating treatment side-effects.
Cervical cancer: Abnormal cells on the cervix growing uncontrollably leads to cervical cancer. This type is a most common cancer affecting women worldwide.
Most cervical cancer is caused by HPV (human papillomavirus) and is contracted through sexual contact with HPV. Symptoms of cervical cancer can include: abnormal vaginal bleeding, pain in the lower belly or pelvis, pain during sex, abnormal vaginal discharge.
Risks of contracting cervical cancer can be reduced by treating early cervical changes (dysplasia). Smoking may trigger cervical changes that can lead to the cancer; quitting smoking decreases the risk. Women of age 26 or younger can be administered HPV vaccine, which protects against two types of cervical cancer. Prevention of STI (Sexually Transmitted Infection) reduces risk of the cancer.
Unlike acne, depression is known to affect more women than men. General causes of depression in women can be attributed to several factors, which by nature can be, biological or hormonal, psychological or social.
These include changes in hormone during menstruation or pregnancy, postpartum depression from delivering child, crash dieting, overwhelming stress from managing work at home or office and marital or relationship problems.
Depression in women is also different from men. Unlike men who become irritable and angry, restless and agitated under depression, women generally tend to feel anxious, nervous, sad and apathetic. Women find it easy talking about self-doubt and despair, while men find it egoistic opening themselves up to friends and family.
Depression treatment through psychotherapy in conjunction with homeopathy focuses on individualistic diagnosis, and use of medication that is without any side-effects and non habit-forming.
Endometriosis is a condition in which the uterine-lining develops not just inside (which is natural) but also outside the uterus.
The tissues that form the outside lining undergoes the same process of forming up and breaking down, just like the inside lining, during menstruation.
Some of regular symptoms are heavy period discharge, abdominal pain and infertility. The illness can be treated through surgery and hormonal supplementation.
Female Sexual Dysfunction
Sexual Dysfunction is the inability to experience complete satisfaction from a sexual activity. In women this means, arousal problems, lack of sexual desire, absence or delay in sexual climax, sex-related phobia and others.
Causes of female sexual dysfunction can be either physical or psychological or both. Various medical conditions can contribute to impaired sexual activity, these include: diabetes, heart disease, menopause, hormonal imbalances, diseases of vital organs like kidney and liver. Alcoholism and drug abuse also affect libido adversely. Psychological factors include stress, anxiety, depression, woeful sexual experiences from past, guilt feeling etc.
Like any other illnesses, female sexual dysfunction requires thorough evaluation of the person’s mental and physical health as well as their medical history. A proper treatment should necessarily involve such rigorous evaluation and use of holistic medication, which is safe and effective in increasing sexual interest.
Another disease related to the uterus, Fibroids are benign tumors that grow from the muscle layers of the uterus. Fibroids are muscle and fibrous tissue growths.
Growth of fibroids typically show no symptoms, however, if there are they can show symptoms of: anemia, constipation, backache, uneasiness in lower abdomen, frequent urination, heavy periodic discharge and pain in legs.
Causes of fibroid formations are unknown, but they tend to increase in size especially during pregnancy owing to increased estrogen levels. Heredity is also known to play a role. If a treatment is necessary, it may be either through medication or surgery.
Hair loss in women: Female pattern baldness
Female pattern baldness is the most common hair loss type seen in women. This generally differs from male pattern baldness such that thinning occurs on the top and the crown areas of the scalp.
Main causes of this problem are aging, hormonal changes and family history of pattern baldness. In most cases hair loss from pattern baldness is moderate, but it is permanent.
Diagnosis can involve ruling out every other hair loss causes, observing medical history and detecting hair loss patterns. Treatment includes medication (application of minoxidil to scalp) or hair transplant (where hair from thicker areas are removed and transplanted on to affected areas).
Coronary heart disease is the most common type of heart disease affecting women. In this condition, the blood vessels that carry blood to the heart narrows or gets blocked leading to heart attacks.
Making healthy lifestyle choices can prevent heart attacks or threatening heart conditions. Key habits include regular exercising, avoiding smoking, keeping blood pressure and diabetes under control, maintaining healthy weight and making healthy food choices.
As compared to men, women are five to seven times more likely to get affected by hypothyroidism. Hypothyroidism is a condition in which the thyroid gland in the body under-secretes the thyroid hormone (TH). TH, among others, is critical in metabolic activity of the body, in blood pressure maintenance and in regulating tissue growth and development.
Some of the common symptoms include: fatigue, depression, weight gain, poor memory, muscle aches, hair loss, dry and itchy skin and many more.
Homeopathic treatment to hypothyroidism focuses on bringing thyroid functioning back to normalcy, ensuring that dependency on external supplementation of hormones is minimal to none.
Menopause doesn’t always take its natural, gradual course and can be premature. Premature menopause can be a result of genetics, auto-immune disorders or medical procedures.
Premature ovarian failure happens when ovaries stop producing eggs before the age of 40; the circumstance is premature and results from changes in levels of estrogen and progesterone.
Common symptoms at the time of menopause include irregular or skipped periods, mood swings, fatigue, headaches, depression, joint muscle aches, pain, libido changes, vaginal dryness and bladder control problems.
Metabolic syndrome is a cluster of five health markers, attaining at least three of which classifies the syndrome. These are: Fasting blood glucose level of 100mg/dL, HDL cholesterol level below 50mg/dL, triglyceride level of 150mg/dL and above, blood pressure level of 130/85mmHg, and waist measurement of 35 inches and above in women.
The syndrome detection becomes important as it’s linked with many health conditions especially heart disease and diabetes.
Higher risk of contraction of metabolic syndrome is attributed to bad food choices and no or minimum body exercise.
In women, being overweight or obese leads to the risk of contracting diabetes, coronary heart diseases and cancers of cervix, endometrium, breasts and ovary among others. Obesity in women also renders them to the dangers of low back pain and knee osteoarthritis. Other pitfalls of obesity are depression, problems in contraception and fertility, both.
Changes in lifestyle and bad habits can help keep obesity at bay. Follow simple rules like not skipping breakfast, incorporating more protein in diets, staying hydrated, avoiding sugar and bad fats and last but not the least, exercising. Here’s the complete list of self-care which you can implement!
Majority of individuals affected by osteoporosis is women, with chances of contracting the disease four times more likely than men. It is a condition in which bones become weak and fragile, leading to sudden fractures.
Osteoporosis doesn’t show symptoms until the bones and hips fracture. Women reaching their menopause show decrease in estrogen levels in the body. Because of this decrease, the natural bone loss resulting from aging process is considerably amped up, causing increase in the rate of bone loss for 8-10 years before returning to premenopausal rates.
The disease can be prevented by maintaining healthy diet and remaining physically active.
Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS)
PCOS is a condition in which small cysts are formed atop ovaries. Although benign, these cysts can lead to hormonal imbalances, which can adversely affect periods and pregnancy.
PCOS, known to be caused by genetic factors, show symptoms, such as acne, weight gain, depression, infertility, irregularity in periods and hair loss.
Making healthy lifestyle choices (good diet, exercise) and hormone therapy can help control PCOS.
Pregnancy planning is critical in ensuring safe health of the mother and the child.
The mother in general needs to be aware of every aspect of good health keeping for herself and her child, especially during the nine months of pregnancy. These can include: knowledge about diseases that can complicate pregnancy (thyroid disease, asthma, diabetes etc.); awareness of dangers of smoking and alcohol consumption, safe use of drugs and medication and finally planning ahead for labour and delivery.
Premenstrual Syndrome (PMS)
Premenstrual Syndrome is associated with women of child-bearing age and produces symptoms of both physical and psychological nature days before menstruation. These symptoms include headaches, backaches, fatigue, irritability, anxiety, mood-swings, weight gain, etc.
PMS is thought to be related to hormonal fluctuations, including estrogen and progesterone, occurring before menstruation period.
Self-care in the form of following healthy diet and exercise regime, getting proper sleep, yoga, and nutritional supplementation can help alleviate PMS and provide respite.
Urinary Tract Infection (UTI)
UTI is known to affect one in two women, with chances of catching the disease repetitively during one’s lifetime.
Urethra, the tube that carries urine from bladder to the outlet, because of its close proximity with anus are prone to getting infected by harmful organisms. The infection can pass up to the bladder, and in bad cases up to the kidneys.
Common symptoms include frequent urge for urinating, burning sensation during urination, back or lower abdominal pain, fatigue, and fever (when infection has reached the kidneys).
Treatment involves use of antibiotic medication. Preventive measures, such as following good genital hygiene, avoiding use of unwanted sprays and scented products and drinking plenty of water can help avoid UTI.
A common term for infection or inflammation of vagina; vaginitis can be caused by bacteria, viruses or yeasts, or through sexual contact. Some chemicals present in sprays, creams or clothing can cause irritation in vagina.
Some of the common symptoms are abnormal discharge with bad odor, itchiness around vagina, burning during urination and also discomfort during sexual intercourse.
Vaginitis has many types (Bacterial vaginosis, chlamydia vaginitis etc.), and hence proper diagnosis should precede any treatment.