A quick article on the sexual needs of women during the postpartum period and some of why so few obtain care. A great reminder for us to take the time to explore and not assume all is “normal” or “ok”.
from the Scientific American Voices section.

“Many factors impact a woman’s ability and desire to have intercourse after giving birth to a baby. These factors are often not addressed during the standard 15-minute postpartum visit.

 

Unfortunately, this is a huge disservice to the patients who have multiple issues postpartum, including sexual pain and low libido or even postpartum depression. Many problems are missed or ignored and develop into much larger more complicated issues in the months to years it may take to obtain an adequate diagnosis and treatment.”

In addition to looking at common post-partum sexual issues, this physician recognizes most are not trained to assist with sexual issues.

“Unfortunately, in my opinion, sexual medicine is not a field that is given much credence in medical school or residencies or beyond. I remember having just one lecture about sexual and reproductive health during medical school. During my Ob/Gyn rotation and even residency, I recall that female sexual dysfunction issues were considered an enigma that many of my own attendings never really addressed.

In a recent survey of the 122 U.S. medical schools, of which 92 responded, only 55 percent had a formal sexual health curriculum, and even less if the school was religiously based. …”

The author also goes on to look at the gender disparity in sexual medicine.

While the look at the field of sexual medicine is valuable, the greatest value is in the reminder to take the time to normalize sexual problems during postpartum, explore their experience, and help them seek assistance.

 

Photo from original post on Scientific American.