Health risk concerns both women and men to the same extent. However, the different anatomy of women has some delicate points which are an open target for some illnesses. Let’s see the most common diseases in women and how they can protect themselves from them.
1. Urinary Tract Infection
Around 40% to 50% of women suffer from a urinary tract infection at least once in their lifetime. Such a condition can affect any part of it which consists of the bladder, kidneys, ureter, and urethra.
Urinary Tract Infection (UTI) is the second most spread infection that is the cause of approximately 8.1 million annual visits to the hospital. Most UTIs are harmless, but if they are let to extend instead of treating them, they can reach the kidneys and generate life-threatening kidney infections.
The primary cause of this disease is often times the E. coli bacterium that usually lives in the digestive system. Women are more prone to urinary tract infections than men because of some anatomical differences. They have a shorter urethra, so the bacteria can travel faster to the bladder. The symptoms comprise of frequent urges to urinate, painful sensation when urinating, nausea, vomiting, and abdominal pains.
Treatment: As this is a disease caused by bacteria, the treatment consists of antibiotics and antimicrobials administration. The period highly depends on the symptoms and patient’s history. Affected women are advised to stay in touch with their doctor for the whole duration of the treatment. They will make sure the risk of antibiotic resistance is kept to a minimum. While consulting with a doctor is mandatory, there’s also a urinary tract infection home remedy available as an additional treatment support.
2. Hashimoto’s Disease
This is the most common type of thyroiditis, and it happens when your immune system attacks the thyroid, meaning it’s an autoimmune disorder. The symptoms of Hashimoto’s disease are fatigue, depression, sensitivity to cold temperatures, irregular periods, and weight gain. In some cases, women can go for years without noticing the signs of this condition.
In time the antibodies produced by the immune system will damage the thyroid cells in a way that your metabolism will slow down. This will affect every function of your body, including heart rate, brain activity, and the speed with which your system turns food into energy.
The causes of Hashimoto’s Disease are triggered by factors such as genes, female hormones, pregnancy, excessive drugs, and exposure to a source of radiation. Women can find out if they have this autoimmune disorder by making an appointment for thyroid function test and antibody test.
Treatment: The good news is that Hashimoto’s Disease can be treated thoroughly. The only cure is a thyroid hormone replacement therapy. It’s a relatively slow process, so it can last for several months, and it consists of one daily pill of levothyroxine. This is a synthetic T4 thyroid hormone that will take the place of the ones eliminated by the immune system.
Women are exposed to a greater risk of osteoporosis than men because they tend to have thinner bones. The level of estrogen decreases drastically the moment women reach menopause. This hormone is in charge of protecting the bones, so its absence will strengthen the risk of breaking a hip. Consequently, one in three women will suffer from this condition after the age of 55.
This condition appears when the bones lose their density, so they become thin and unable to resist to great shocks. Women will lose one-third of their hip bone structure by the age of 80, while men are expected to lose only one-fourth.
The roots of osteoporosis may date way back to childhood and adolescence when our body grows most of the bone structure. After the age of 20, this process slows down, and the new bone mass additions seem insignificant until the age of 30 when it will stagnate for good.
Treatment: A healthy lifestyle that excludes the use of alcohol and cigarettes will lower the risk of contracting this condition. However, daily nutrition should comprise natural minerals and vitamins, namely Calcium and vitamin D. Furthermore, healthy eating habits should be accompanied by daily physical exercises.
Medication for osteoporosis targets the bone loss which is the core factor that causes this disease. Fosamax, Actonel, Binosto, and Bonvia will fight against the cells that break down bones. There is usually a hormone replacement therapy that assists women at menopause to add a necessary supplement of estrogen that will protect them. Please see your doctor before going into any treatment.
These are three main diseases that commonly affect women. It is always indicated to perform a thorough set of tests each year to take control over your health and treat potential conditions while they are still at an incipient stage.
Mike Jones is a Boston University graduate with an MS in Mass Communication which he has put to use in his writing career and Home Remedy Shop management. He is focused on natural remedies and health prophylaxis.