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January 17, 2017 | OB/GYN
Proper care of reproductive organs, especially during or around pregnancy, can go a long way in preventing many of the common conditions that women experience. In many cases, preventive care can reduce the need for expensive, invasive treatments that may become necessary if the right precautions aren’t taken earlier in life.
There are two kinds of doctors who specialize in this sort of treatment: obstetricians and gynecologists. The two practices are closely related, and may even be merged into a classification called “OB/GYN.” Let’s look at the two fields, and what to expect when visiting these doctors.
A gynecologist provides more generalized care, and deals with women’s overall reproductive health. A gynecologist is especially focused on the health of the reproductive tract. There are a few procedures your doctor might suggest to remove the reproductive tract if certain diseases or conditions develop.
An obstetrician also deals with the reproductive system, but specializes more specifically in pregnancy and childbirth. Obstetricians care for women during pregnancy and handle the delivery of the baby when the time is right. If there are any special needs during pregnancy – a Caesarean section or a need to turn the baby inside the womb, for instance – an obstetrician handles these.
Both gynecologists and obstetricians require special medical training, and in many cases, the two fields overlap or combine. A doctor can become licensed in both areas with four years of additional residency on top of their typical medical school requirements, and if they choose to do so, they take on the title of “OB/GYN.”
Many women feel nervous about seeing an OB/GYN, and while this is totally natural, it’s important to remember that they’re there to keep you healthy and prevent disease. It’s generally recommended that girls start seeing an OB/GYN between the ages of 13 and 15, or whenever they become sexually active.
A typical OB/GYN visit is simple and straightforward. Some of the steps may include:
It’s important to think of OB/GYN appointments as a chance to check in on one of your body’s most important areas. Your doctor will ask you questions to help make sure nothing is missed. Some of the topics you may be asked about, or should consider asking about if you’ve had any problems include:
“What to Expect From an Ob-Gyn Visit.” WebMD. http://www.webmd.com/women/guide/what-to-expect-from-an-ob-gyn-visit#1
“What Is an Obstetrician?” WebMD. http://www.webmd.com/baby/what-is-an-obstetrician-twins#1
“Obstetricians and Gynecology – What’s the Difference? Is There One?” Blue Ride OB/GYN Associates. http://www.blueridgeobg.com/obstetrics-and-gynecology-consulting-right-one-744
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This information is not intended to replace the advice of a medical professional. You should always consult your doctor before making decisions about your health.