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Recognizing Urinary or Gynecologic Problems 

Knowing what's normal

During your teen years, sometimes problems can happen with the health of your reproductive system or urinary tract. Talk with a parent or your healthcare provider about all of the normal changes to expect in your body during this time. That way, you’ll know if there are any abnormal changes. Then they can be checked right away. 

When should you talk with a healthcare provider?

Here are some things to contact your healthcare provider about:

  • Changes in vaginal bleeding and discharge. Bleeding and other fluids (discharge) are a normal part of your menstrual cycle. But, if you notice any changes, talk with your healthcare provider.

  • Irregular periods. These are common in the first few years after your first period. But, if you have a sudden change in your cycle, talk to your healthcare provider. You may need some tests.

  • Unusual discharge or itching. These may be caused by mild infections that are easy to treat. But, if not treated, they may lead to more serious problems. In some cases, an infection can lead to infertility. These symptoms may also be a sign of a sexually transmitted infection (STI). An STI needs treatment.

Also talk with your healthcare provider if you have any of these symptoms:

  • Bleeding between periods

  • Frequent and urgent need to pee, or a burning feeling when you pee

  • Abnormal vaginal bleeding during or after sex

  • Pain or pressure in your pelvis that differs from menstrual cramps

  • Itching, burning, swelling, redness, or soreness in the vaginal area

  • Sores or lumps in the genital area

  • Vaginal discharge with an unpleasant or unusual odor, or color

  • Increased vaginal discharge

  • Pain or discomfort during sex

Paying attention helps

When you notice symptoms early and see a healthcare provider right away, this helps raise the chance of a successful treatment.

Online Medical Reviewer: Donna Freeborn PhD CNM FNP
Online Medical Reviewer: Heather Trevino
Online Medical Reviewer: Irina Burd MD PhD
Date Last Reviewed: 2/1/2019
© 2000-2019 The StayWell Company, LLC. 800 Township Line Road, Yardley, PA 19067. All rights reserved. This information is not intended as a substitute for professional medical care. Always follow your healthcare professional's instructions.
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