When talking about women’s health, the issues of anatomy and hormones always come into question. These two factors often make women at risk of experiencing certain health conditions at higher rates than men, though because of lifestyle and social factors, some health problems seem to indiscriminately affect both men and women at very similar rates.
To further understand women’s health and the health and wellbeing needs that women have, it’s important to consider first some of the most prevalent health problems that women in the US are likely to face.
The Most Common Health Issues Affecting Women
- Cervical Cancer
Cervical cancer originates in the lower uterus on the cervix itself. Human papillomavirus (HPV) is central to the development of cervical cancer and can be detected in 99.7 percent of cervical cancers. HPV virus is considered a sexually transmitted infection. Often time cervical cancer may develop before you show any signs of cancer; therefore, routine pap smears are highly recommended. Routine HPV vaccination is recommended at 11 to 12 years in both males and females to reduce the risk of HPV infection and thus cervical cancer.
- Breast Cancer
It is the most common type of cancer in women, second only to lung cancer in terms of its mortality rate. While breast cancer awareness is at an all-time high, many women are still reluctant to get screenings out of fear of getting a diagnosis. Anxiety surrounding breast cancer can also lead women to have unnecessary and severe treatments such as mastectomies when other treatment options might be available.
- Heart Disease
Heart disease is the leading cause of death in the US for both men and women, and the CDC estimates that around 29% of deaths among women are because of this condition.
Additionally, women tend to be more likely to remain undiagnosed as the symptoms of heart disease in women are not the same as those of men, which leads to many doctors and patients missing the signs. For example, women tend not to have the classic chest pains when it comes to heart disease, and are more likely to experience headaches, dizziness, nausea, or shortness of breath.
- Depression & Anxiety
Women tend to experience higher rates of mental health conditions such as depression and anxiety. It’s estimated that twice as many women experience depression as men, though it is unclear exactly why.
The running theory is that the hormonal changes women often go through throughout their life may increase their risk of such mental health issues. Among these hormonal changes, those relating to pregnancy and birth particularly seem to increase the risks of women developing these mental health conditions.
denova’ Integrated Approach to Healthcare
denova believes that addressing women’s health must take into account the person as a whole and not just the medical profile. We believe that to ensure your long-term health and wellbeing, we must treat the body as well as the mind, which is why we’ve created special integrated healthcare programs to assist you.
If you are interested in benefiting from our services, we offer many types of care for supporting women’s health: primary care, behavioral health, counseling, addiction treatment.
Contact us today for more information.