More about sex and relationships needed at gynecological visits

Dec 15, 2009

Visits to a gynaecologist or midwife are generally associated with different tests and/or prescriptions for contraceptives, but could offer so much more. Women, doctors and midwives are agreed that gynaecological visits presents great opportunities for dialogue about sexual health, reveals a thesis from the Sahlgrenska Academy at the University of Gothenburg, Sweden.

Many see sex as a problem, the thesis shows. Almost 500 women aged 23-29 answered questions about their sex lives, their relationships and how they view gynaecological visits. One in five had a reduced sex drive and found it difficult to be satisfied together with their partner. Just as many said that they had been taken advantage of sexually or experienced other forms of sexual abuse.

"Many young women actually know little about their sexuality," says midwife Eva Wendt, who wrote the thesis. "If you feel confident about your body and understand how it works, sex is much easier and much more fun."

Nine out of ten young women think it natural to be asked questions about sexuality at a visit to a or midwife, the survey shows. Seven out of ten think it natural to be asked questions about sexual abuse.

"Women trust their doctor and their midwife - they are independent parties who have both expertise and a duty of confidentiality," says Wendt. "This paves the way for a dialogue when these professionals ask questions and can help women to reflect and see their own situation more clearly."

This view is shared by , general practitioners and gynaecologists, but it is still relatively unusual for medical professionals to invite women to engage in in-depth discussion of sexuality and relationships. Instead, visits are primarily medically-oriented - discussion of sexuality gets forgotten or time runs out.

"Both doctors and midwives describe opportunities to create respectful meetings and strengthen women by giving them information and encouraging them to have a positive view of sexuality," says Wendt. "Now that we know that women and medical professionals both want the same thing, perhaps sexuality and dialogue with the patient can be allotted more time at gynaecological visits."

Explore further: New MCAT shifts focus, will include humanities

Provided by University of Gothenburg

not rated yet
add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Report: Sexuality less varied in women

Apr 12, 2007

While the official cause of human sexuality remains debatable, one Michigan State University scientist has said women typically are more sexually flexible.

Taking the sex out of sexual health screening

May 09, 2008

Young women would accept age-based screening for the sexually transmitted infection chlamydia, but would want this test to be offered to everyone, rather than to people ‘singled out’ according to their sexual history.

Gender affects perceptions of infidelity

Oct 29, 2008

A new study in the Journal of Marital and Family Therapy explored how men and women perceive online and offline sexual and emotional infidelity. Results show that men felt sexual infidelity was more upsetting and women felt e ...

Recommended for you

New MCAT shifts focus, will include humanities

12 minutes ago

(HealthDay)—The Medical College Admission Test (MCAT) has been revised, and the latest changes, including more humanities such as social sciences, are due to be implemented next April, according to a report ...

Using feminist theory to understand male rape

11 hours ago

Decades of feminist research have framed rape and sexual assault as a 'women's issue', leaving little room for the experiences of male victims. But a new study published in the Journal of Gender Studies suggests that feminist ...

Simulation-based training improves endoscopy execution

Oct 18, 2014

(HealthDay)—Simulation-based training (SBT) improves clinicians' performance of gastrointestinal endoscopy in both test settings and clinical practice, according to research published in the October issue ...

Data sharing in pharmaceutical industry shows progress

Oct 16, 2014

To enhance the transparency of clinical trials for new drugs, a number of pharmaceutical firms have begun sharing data with investigators outside their own companies. Brian L. Strom, chancellor of Rutgers Biomedical and Health ...

User comments : 0