Schedule Your Annual Well-Woman Exam

The annual well-woman exam isn’t usually one of those things’ women look forward to; however, the importance of that annual exam and consult is extremely important to your current and possibly future health.

What is a Well-Woman Exam?

Well-woman exams normally begin at age 21 or when a female starts to become sexually active. The annual wellness exams usually include a pelvic exam looking for masses, growths, or other abnormalities, a pap test to screen for cervical cancer, and a breast exam to check for lumps, skin changes, or nipple discharge. Pap smears, pelvic examinations and breast exams are essential preventative tests that all women need to take seriously. Pap smears might show early detection of indicators associated with health risks like cervical cancer. While breast exams can aid in the detection of breast cancer. If you have a family history of carcinoma, it is even more imperative to schedule an annual wellness check-up. Dr. Jill Gibson is a seasoned gynecologist specializing in a variety of gynecologic services.  She is a caring and sensitive specialist willing to discuss even the most sensitive topics.

Interesting facts: 

  • About 1 in 8 U.S. women (about 12%) will develop invasive breast cancer over the course of their lifetime. In 2019, an estimated 268,600 new cases of invasive breast cancer are expected to be diagnosed in women in the U.S., along with 62,930 new cases of non-invasive (in situ) breast cancer.

  • A woman’s risk of breast cancer nearly doubles if she has a first-degree relative (mother, sister, daughter) who has been diagnosed with breast cancer. Less than 15% of women who get breast cancer have a family member diagnosed with it. Source:

Annual Well-Woman Exam

Talk with Your OBGYN

Not only is the well-woman exam important to your health, but it is also a great time to talk to your gynecologist about concerns relating to discomforts in sex to vaginal irritation.

If there are any abnormalities such as unusual vaginal discharge accompanied by discoloration or strong odor, contact Dr. Gibson or a doctor of your choosing.  These could be signs of an infection or something more serious. If these symptoms are left untreated, they could become very serious, it’s important to address them quickly to prevent future complications. 

Don’t Feel Judged

Women are generally concerned that the OBGYN would judge them based on their sexual practices and how they care for their bodies, however, it is essential to keep in mind that there is very little when it relates to females’ health care that the OBGYN has not seen or heard. A gynecologist’s main goal should be to help the patient. In all honesty, dealing with concerns to your health may just help medical professionals more proficiently make an effective personalized therapy and a diagnosis. Each and every female is different and requires various treatment practices. Holding back relevant information regarding smoking cigarettes and consuming habits, the number of sexual partners, or romantic experiences (for instance, pain throughout intercourse) can simply hinder the doctor’s ability to provide sufficient treatment.

Is the Pill the Right Way?

In case a patient needs contraceptive assistance, it only makes good sense to disclose such info to the Gynecologist in order to discover any birth control that will be best for the individual. You will need to keep in mind that absolutely no two birth controls are the same and all birth controls possess adverse effects. Women will want to deal with their very own Gynecologist to locate a contraceptive that will coincide with all their lifestyle habits and will also have the least negative effects. It is not unusual for women to want to test several different approaches or simply brand names involving birth control before they uncover the appropriate one that works with their body. Never make a contraceptive choice without first consulting a qualified OBGYN. The risk of making a wrong choice is just not worth taking.

Emergency contraceptive pills and regular birth control pills are what are available to prevent unwanted pregnancy. Both forms of contraception are different, and you should have a very clear idea about their effectiveness and limitations. Emergency contraception, as the term suggests, is a form of contraception which you need to use in an emergency. Majority of these pills contain a synthetic form of progesterone and work by stopping or delaying ovulation. Regular contraceptive pills, on the other hand, are for daily use.

Annual well-woman exams must be accepted and not perceived as negative. They provide a great opportunity of females to acquire healthy life and get excellent advice and treatment to continue to create healthy and balanced living choices.

Contact Board Certified Jill Gibson, MD to schedule an appointment. Dr. Gibson is committed to excellence in women’s healthcare. She cares for women in all stages of life – adolescence, childbearing, perimenopausal and menopausal.