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5 Common Health Issues Every Woman Should Be Aware Of

5 Common Health Issues Every Woman Should Be Aware Of

It is undeniable that many experiences are unique to women. From adolescence to adulthood, women often go through monthly menstruation, pregnancy, giving birth, breastfeeding, and menopause. But while these are, at a degree, expected, some conditions are not. What are the common health issues that women face today? How can women prevent or overcome them?

In this article, we’ll list down some of the common health conditions that affect women.

Breast Cancer

First on our list of common health issues in women is breast cancer, the most aggressive cancer concerning the female population worldwide. It typically begins in the lining of the milk ducts but can spread to other organs.

A breast cancer patient may notice breast lumps during breast exam. However, note that the majority of lumps are not destructive. Still, women should at least have their breasts examined by a medical professional every once in a while. Experts also recommend breast self exam once a month and for women to undergo the mammogram when necessary.

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), breast cancer has surpassed lung cancer at being the most common type of cancer worldwide.

In the Philippines, it accounts for 16% of all cancer incidences, and approximately 30% of which occur in women. The Department of Health (DOH) reveals that breast cancer is the most common cancer site. Additionally, it is also the third leading cause of cancer deaths among Filipinos in accordance with the data provided by the Global Cancer Observatory (GCO). Doctors say that three out of every hundred Filipina is likely to have breast cancer during their lifetime.

Reminder:

On top of breast cancer, women also need to be aware of other cancers, like cervical cancer, ovarian cancer, and endometrial cancer. Regardless of the type of cancer, doctors emphasize the importance of early detection and prompt treatment.

Worried? Take Our Breast Cancer Risk Screener Below:

Ischemic Heart Diseases

Coronary heart failure affects people who have a significant buildup of plaque in the coronary arteries. The plaque restricts blood flow and might worsen with time. Eventually, it can result in angina, heart attacks, heart failure, and arrhythmias.

Heart disease remains a major cause of death in women. Some symptoms that might clue you in to a heart problem include chest pain, shortness of breath, and arm weakness.

The best way to avoid this condition is to live a healthy lifestyle, which you can practice through:

  • Exercising
  • Eating a well-balanced diet
  • Avoid smoking
  • Maintaining a healthy weight

In addition to that, other health issues such as diabetes, high blood pressure, and high cholesterol must be managed.

Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS)

Another of the common health issues in women is polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS). It happens when a woman’s ovaries or adrenal glands produce an abnormally high level of male hormones. Cysts (fluid-filled sacs) might grow on the ovaries as a result of this.

Women with obesity are much more likely to develop PCOS. They are also more prone to other health issues like diabetes and heart disease.

Symptoms could include:

  • Infertility
  • Pelvic discomfort
  • Excessive hair growth on the face, chest, stomach, as well as on the thumbs or toes
  • Baldness or thinning hair
  • Acne, oily skin, or dandruff
  • Patches of thickened dark brown or black skin

PCOS may affect the woman’s fertility. However, there are other conditions that might make it difficult for a woman to conceive. These include:

Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STDs)

Sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) are infections that can be contracted by engaging in sexual activity with someone who is infected. They are caused by bacteria, parasites, and viruses with about over 20 different types.

Although many STDs affect men and women, the health issues they cause are often more severe in women. If a pregnant woman gets it, the baby may suffer serious health consequences.

Anxiety and Depression

Women, according to research, are more likely than men to suffer from anxiety, depression, and somatic complaints as a result of natural hormonal changes.

For instance, premenstrual syndrome (PMS), which is common in women, may present with irritability or depression. Also, many mothers experience “baby blues” or postpartum depression shortly after giving birth. Meanwhile, perimenopause, or the transition into menopause, can also result in mental health concerns.

Depression is a common mental health problem for women, and it can alarmingly lead to suicide. Therefore, it is critical to raise awareness for mental health issues among women and give them the confidence to seek help.

Key Takeaways

Women face a variety of health issues and conditions, ranging from prenatal and hormonal changes to gynecological conditions and cancer. Hence, part of celebrating women is giving them the knowledge of the common health issues so they can be better prepared to prevent or overcome them.

Learn more about Women’s Health here.

Hello Health Group does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.

Sources

Breast cancer now most commonly occurring cancer: WHO, https://www.pna.gov.ph/articles/1129508 Accessed February 23, 2022

DOH Leads Observance of the Breast Cancer Awareness Month 2021, https://doh.gov.ph/press-release/DOH-LEADS-OBSERVANCE-OF-THE-BREAST-CANCER-AWARENESS-MONTH-2021 Accessed February 23, 2022

Top diseases that kill women in PH, https://www.pna.gov.ph/articles/1063773 Accessed February 23, 2022

Ten top issues for women’s health, https://www.who.int/news-room/commentaries/detail/ten-top-issues-for-women’s-health Accessed February 23, 2022

9 Health Issues Every Woman Should Understand, https://www.nm.org/healthbeat/healthy-tips/9-health-issues-every-woman-should-understand Accessed February 23, 2022

What health issues or conditions are specific to women only?, https://www.nichd.nih.gov/health/topics/womenshealth/conditioninfo/whatconditions Accessed February 23, 2022

Common Reproductive Health Concerns for Women, https://www.cdc.gov/reproductivehealth/womensrh/healthconcerns.html Accessed February 23, 2022 

Health Issues Specific to Women’s Health,https://online.regiscollege.edu/online-masters-degrees/online-master-science-nursing/womens-health-nurse-practitioner/resources/health-issues-specific-womens-health/ Accessed February 23, 2022

 

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Written by Fiel Tugade Updated Apr 11
Medically reviewed by Dexter Macalintal, MD