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Childbearing Years

Babies. Toddlers. Jobs. Home. Relationships.

Where has all my energy gone?

Life is often overwhelming when you might be putting in long days at work and long nights with a colicky baby. There's no time to eat or sleep — nevermind pay attention to your health.

But you should.

Transitions to motherhood and other major life events can mean special health concerns. Breast health tests become more important. You need to begin paying attention to issues like osteoporosis.

Even if you don't have another minute in your day, Southcoast can help you pay better attention to your health with testing and services that are close to home.

Even a quick massage!

Tests You Need in Your Childbearing Years

  • Monthly breast self-examination.
  • Breast exam by physician (annually).
  • Pap smear (annually).
  • Pelvic exam (annually).
  • Periodic cholesterol and blood pressure checks.
  • Baseline mammogram (between the ages of 35 and 40; used to compare all future mammograms to detect subtle changes in breast tissue.)

Special Health Issues for Childbearing Women

    Pregnancy Planning: Infertility: Endometriosis:
      A disease caused by uterine tissue that grows outside of the uterus. Usually responds to surgical and non-surgical treatment.
      Causes painful cramping and other debilitating symptoms during periods. Exercise, high fiber diets and medications can help. Consult your health practitioner.
    Pre-Menstrual Syndrome:
      A condition that can include depression, insomnia, breast tenderness, weight gain and other symptoms. Diet and exercise, and in some cases medication, can relieve symptoms. Consult your health practitioner.
    Parenting Issues: Breast Health:
      Women need to practice monthly breast exams and get a baseline mammogram at about age 35 (perhaps earlier if there is a history of breast cancer in your family. Discuss this with your physician or health practitioner and follow their recommendations.)

    Southcoast Services for Women of Childbearing Years

      Mammography/Ultrasound Stereotactic Breast Biopsies
        Image-assisted breast biopsies done using a hollow needle. Used to help diagnose malignancies.

      • St. Luke's Hospital Radiology Department
        New Bedford, Mass.

      Diagnostic Days
        If women have a suspected problem with a mammogram, she can schedule a "diagnostic day" at the Southcoast Center for Women's Health in North Dartmouth. This includes a full range of diagnostic testing along with consulation with a physician, all in the convenience of one visit.

        For more information call the Southcoast Center for Women's Health at 508-998-0600.

      Gynecology Services
        A range of gynecology services area available in physicians' offices, clinics and at our hospital sites. Laparoscopic and laser gynecologic surgery is available at all three hospital sites, provided by gynecologists on Southcoast Medical Staff.
      Gynecology/Family Planning Clinic Level II Nurseries (for infants needing specialized care) Infertility
      • Southcoast Fertility Center
        Fall River, Mass.
        508-679-3131 Ext. 7112

        Providing specialized testing and treatment. Infertility services are also available through individual obstetrician/gynecologists throughout the South Coast area.

      Home Health Services & Early Maternity Discharge Program Women's Health Rehabilitation Services
        Provided by a registered physical therapist with specialized training and expertise in women's health issues. Individual evaluation and treatment for pelvic pain problems, including endometriosis, dysmenhorea, interstitial cystitis and other problems.

        Evaluation and treatment for pre and postnatal musculo-skeletal problems related to pregnancy, including low-back pain, carpal tunnel syndrome and others.

      • Southcoast Center for Women's Health
        North Dartmouth, Mass.

      Wellness/Health Education Services
        For an informational calendar or to register call 1-800-497-1727

        Topics include:

        • Pregnancy.
        • Healthy pregnancy planning.
        • Childbirth.
        • Childbirth refresher.
        • Lamaze.
        • Busy people's weekend childbirth class.
        • Cesarean birth classes.
        • VBAC (vaginal birth after cesarean).
        • Sibling classes.
        • Pre- and post-natal fitness.
        • Breastfeeding classes.
        • Parenting.
        • Infant care.
        • Breastfeeding support group.
        • CPR/Safety for parents.
        • New mom's network.
        • Tumbling toddlers.
        • Toning for Two.
        • Parenting skills.
        • RAPP (Responsible Attitudes for the Prevention of Pregnancy) for parents.
        • Parents' Enduring Grief support group.
      Wellness Information

Find a Physician: 800-497-1727

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