Congratulations, you're getting married! A wedding is one of life's biggest events to plan and you have probably thought of everything by now. Except there is one detail that brides-to-be often forget before embarking on the blissful honeymoon: a gynecological exam. As unpleasant as going to the doctor can be, it is important to make sure your vaginal health is in good order before the honeymoon. Not only can certain vaginal conditions make sex uncomfortable or impossible, but sex can irritate the vagina and make an existing condition worse. Here are some symptoms and conditions to look out for and ask your doctor to test during your exam:
Vaginal dryness could be a particularly surprising ailment that you might have not thought about affecting your marriage. But when the cervix is not producing enough moisture for the vaginal walls, sex can be very painful. Also, a dry vagina is not cleaning itself as it should and leaving the area vulnerable to infections. Painful sex and chronic infections don't make for a happy and healthy sex life. Fortunately, vaginal dryness is fairly easy to diagnose and treat with a little help from your doctor. Depending on if the condition is chronic or temporary, there may be medication or cream treatments which are not painful or invasive.
Vaginal yeast infections are marked by itchiness, dryness, irritation and pale, sometimes foul-smelling discharge. These infections happen because the pH balance of the vagina is off and yeasts are allowed to grow out of control. They can be caused by things like soaps, chemicals near the vagina, stress and diet, to name just a few. Sex can irritate the vagina further if there is a yeast infection present, and the smell and discharge can be unpleasant. Yeast infections must be diagnosed and are usually treated with creams and medicines.
Urinary Tract Infections
These infections occur when foreign bacteria (usually from the anal area) makes its way into the urethra. The symptoms include a burning feeling while urinating, blood in the urine, painful sex, pelvic pain and even fever. It is simple for doctors to diagnose and treat these infections, but it should be done right away as a UTI can spread to the kidneys and cause serious damage. Frequent sex and certain birth controls can cause and aggravate UTI's, so get checked before the big day to avoid unnecessary pain. These infections are usually treated with a dose of antibiotics, which can have some unpleasant side-effects but are a much better alternative than a kidney infection.
STD Tests and Bacterial Tests
If you're having mysterious symptoms that don't match any particular criteria, an STD and bacteria screening may be in order. Maybe you have odd discharge, sores on the genitals, or chronic fatigue. These can be caused by common STD's or bacterial imbalances, some of which are easily cured by a visit to the doctor. You don't want to have painful sex on your honeymoon or give an infection to your partner. Be safe and get checked before the wedding for a happy and healthy start to your marriage.