What you need to know about your yearly well-woman visit
Do I really need to go every year? You may ask yourself this question when you know it is time to schedule your annual exam. The answer is yes. An annual gynecologic exam, also known as a well-woman visit, is an important yearly health assessment for all young adult and adult women.
Often, women think if they are not in their child-bearing years they don’t need to schedule a regular well-woman exam. The reality is that so much more is covered in an annual appointment beyond prenatal care. Kettering Health Network OB/GYNs care for women of all ages, from adolescence through post-menopause, and address everything from vaccinations, mental health, issues with menstruation, and cancer screening.
A well-woman exam is an opportunity to ensure that you are at your healthiest so you can continue to lead the life you want without any health-related interruptions.
Below is a breakdown of what can be expected at a well-woman exam in every stage of life.
All ages: A full-health discussion and evaluation covering healthcare topics pertinent to your life. Everything from getting a flu vaccine, to selecting the right kind of birth control, to managing menopause symptoms can be addressed by your OB/GYN.
13-15: Initial well woman visits begin. These early appointments are typically conversations between patient and provider regarding the patient’s health and well-being.
19: Breast and pelvic exams begin
21: Pap tests begin
Child-bearing years: Pre-conception counseling
Menopause and beyond: Managing menopause symptoms, any other healthcare concerns like urinary incontinence, relationship issues, and more.
Think of an annual exam as a chance to talk to an expert about any concerns you may have. If you don’t have any health concerns, recognize that this appointment can help catch an issue that might otherwise go undetected.
When you are at your healthiest, you are at your best. Going to an annual exam is one more way to live your life to the fullest.