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Disclaimer: The following content is provided by Aisle7 and is for informational purposes only. It is based on scientific studies, clinical experience, or usage as cited in each article. Hi-Health provides this information as a service but does not endorse it. In addition, Aisle7 does not recommend or endorse any specific products.
What to watch out for
Compared with women in the general population, women with type 1 and type 2 diabetes are more likely to experience sexual dysfunction, including:
If you have diabetes, work with your doctor prior to experiencing sexual or reproductive health issues, if possible. Be open and honest about what you do and don’t know about diabetes and its effects on reproductive health. Early diagnosis and treatment, along with well-planned preconception care can help protect the health of both mom and baby.
Get preventive screening and care
In some populations of women with diabetes, significantly fewer women with the condition receive recommended pap smears and mammograms compared with women without diabetes. The reasons why aren’t clear. Some may fear finding out that their diabetes isn’t as well-controlled as they’d hoped, while others may feel like diabetes is their most pressing, and only, health concern, and everything else is put on the back burner. Regardless of the reason, it’s important to take advantage of preventive health screening.
Benefits of screening are clear. For example, finding cervical cancer early—by getting regular pap smears—is the best way to work towards successful treatment. And while women with diabetes aren’t any more likely to be diagnosed with cervical cancer, some research suggests they may have worse outcomes with certain types of cervical cancers.
If you’re younger than 26, ask your doctor if you could benefit from the HPV vaccine as well. This vaccine can prevent infection with HPV (a virus), which is the cause of nearly all cervical cancer across the globe.
Monitoring and managing reproductive health with an eye on family planning
For women with diabetes, unintended pregnancies can be especially difficult, because if blood sugar isn’t well managed, it can increase the risk of pregnancy complications. Pregnancy itself can make blood sugar harder to control as well, so it pays to have an effective blood sugar management plan in place before trying to become pregnant.
When thinking about your future and family planning, the following factors are some important ways in which diabetes can affect reproductive health and fertility:
Take home? Take charge!
The take home message? Diabetes can impact reproductive and sexual health, but it doesn’t have to. Knowing your body well, working with your doctor, knowing what to look out for, and identifying problems as soon as they occur will all go a long way to preserving your reproductive health and your well-being.
(Diabetes Voice 2009;54:21–24.)
Suggested Use: 3 capsules daily with food or as directed by a physician. Consult a physician for use beyond 12 weeks.