As a woman and a health care provider for 25 years, I strive to make women of all ages comfortable as they take the steps necessary to be proactive about their health.
Why see a gynecologist?
A gynecologic exam is an important part of health care. Typically, young women first visit the gynecologist at 18, with exams starting at age 21. The gynecologists at Baptist Health Women’s Choice – Blair Tolar, MD, and Amber Savells, MD – as well as my myself see girls as young as 13 for issues such as painful menstrual periods or abdominal pain.
The visit usually includes a health screening and a physical examination. We can discuss the benefits of the cervical cancer vaccine and the prevention of sexually transmitted disease and pregnancy.
As women age, they will need to schedule regular preventive health visits with a gynecologist. Conducted during a pelvic examination, a pap smear test to check for cancer is recommended annually, beginning at 21.
We also encourage patients to do regular self-breast exams starting at a young age. Some young women have lumps in their breast, but you need to be aware of your body in case they change or you feel pain.
In addition, we can discuss contraception, fertility and family planning, as well as other health concerns. It is important for you to feel comfortable with discussing every detail of your health with your physicians and their staff.
Talk to our nurses
If you have any question about your health, ask our nurses at Baptist Health Line 24 hours a day at 270.575.2918.
– Tammy Carr, APRN, Baptist Health Women’s Choice