Daughters and Puberty

Our children grow so fast. One day they’re babies and next day they’re going through puberty. This video is about preparing your daughter to go through puberty in a peaceful and healthy way.

You have to start early. The first thing you have to do is start at the age of four, telling your daughters about the difference between girls and boys, anatomically speaking. So, how boys look like and how girls look like on the outside and that they are different body wise.

Later on the girl will find out on her own that she is different because she likes to play with dolls perhaps and boys like to play with cars and trains. So she will start to notice the difference between her and boys. In that meantime it’s very important to make her think and feel that she is equal to the boy, in the sense that they’re two equal human beings, she’s not weaker or she’s not less intelligent. You always have to be careful with making your daughter understand that she’s just as good as a boy. In some cultures this is a very big problem because they make their daughters feel that they are weaker and less, and that affects the girls throughout their lives.

You also have to start gradually to tell your daughter about her body as she approaches the puberty, that you tell her that things are going to change in your body. You have to pick the good times to talk to your daughter, so, if she’s not interested or if she’s embarrassed or too shy or she pulls away and she doesn’t want to talk about it, please respect her feelings. So, every time you get the chance to talk to her about a piece of information about her body, pick the right time. For example when you’re together in the car driving, this is a good moment because you’re not looking her in the eyes and so she’s not that embarrassed. And you go and just driving and enjoying the way and talking about maybe embarrassing things.

While cooking you will have to stress with your daughter on the fact that she needs healthy food and encourage her to understand the relation between eating healthy and looking healthy.

Also, if you’re watching movies together, you can explain your opinions about life and morals and love, via commenting on the people or the characters in the film. So, you will be watching a love story and you will explain the good thing about love and the bad things about sexuality or the good things about it. So you can tell her, convey the message to her, via your comments on the characters in the movie.

Puberty has many aspects of development. Not only physical, but also emotional and social. Don’t forget to prepare your child for the emotional and social aspects, as well as the physical, of course.

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THE PHYSICAL ASPECTS

Let’s start with the physical aspects and developments. Puberty is because of the hormones, so the hormones are happening all around your child’s body and she is experiencing a different person who lives inside of her, because of these hormones.

Of course she’s looking at her body and she’s changing. You can give her a book about it and she can read and look at the images of how her body will change. If she gets very confused about it you can also take her to the doctor, a gynaecologist or psychologist, and introduce the aspects of development to her via another person.

It’s also important that if she feels insecure, that you assure her and tell her that girls grow at different paces. So if her schoolmates are different she shouldn’t compare herself to them, because girls are different until the age of, perhaps, eighteen. They have different phases of physical development.

Also, you should encourage her to do sports, because sport will make her more secure about her body and will make her feel much more relaxed with the hormonal changes. Be very practical in that phase, because it’s about time to show the girl practically that she’s a woman.

A good chance at this phase is to buy a book, maybe about anatomy and physiology of the human body. And in this case she will feel more free to know more information on her own.

Around the age of nine it’s a good moment to start to talk about menstruation with your daughter, especially if you have had en early menarche. Menarche is the age at which the girls experience their first menstruation. So if you’ve had an early menarche your daughters’ chance is higher to having an early menarche as well. So you will talk to her about starting menstruation always before it starts, because the experience of the menstruation is sometimes traumatic, very stressful to some girls, and it’s very important that they are physically and mentally ready for it.

Another important experience is the phase of buying her a new bra and new underwear that is fitting for her. So a good thing is to try to measure her size and go together to buy a new bra, it’s a very important experience for a daughter.

And then it’s time to buy pads. I would suggest to always use pads, the cotton ones, or the fabric small towels, because they are healthy and will not have the side effects that tampons can cause. I would not recommend to use tampons. So you can buy her all the things that are important for her menstruation phase, like the pads and the nice water bottle, it’s inside this cute little bear. You can make it yourself if you like.

There’s also the idea of changing in the body odour to your daughter. So it’s important to teach her about personal hygiene, that she should wash everyday and use mild soap. So the soap has to be of a ph that is close to her skin ph. So this soap is ph 5.5, you’ll find it in the pharmacies. That’s better than these aggressive soaps, especially around the genital area.

It’s also important to teach her to be strict with trimming her body hair and brushing her teeth regularly and using deodorant. Some girls would prefer using the roll-on deodorant, some the spray deodorant, but I would prefer to always use natural deodorants. That’s why I’m recommending that you would make your own at home, using for example lemon, baking soda and ginger in a mix. And you can put it in a bottle for your daughter here, like this one.

Your daughter will also wonder about waxing and shaving the bikini area. While it’s good to trim the hair with save scissors like those or to shave it with a shaver, like an electric shaver, the epilation, so, removing the hairs from the root is actually not very healthy because this hair protects her against the mechanical rubbing of the skin against her tight clothes and it also protects her partly against the bacteria. So, having trimmed pubic hair is much better then shaving it or epilating it completely.

It’s also very handy to teach your daughter about the trouble that comes with menstruation. So, you can provide her with painkillers like paracetamol or panadol. I would not suggest her to use aspirin until she’s twenty-five.

Another important aspect of her health development – physically wise – is that she will start to notice skin changes, in the form of acne or maybe other changes like stretch marks and so on. So skin care is very important in this phase. One thing to know is that skin care comes first from inside, so healthy nutrition is a must for young people, as well as everybody, but young people have to understand that healthy food is very important for their appearance as well as the inside. A good way to teach your children to eat healthy food is that you eat healthy food yourself, set a good example, but also explain to them that omega 3 in the form of capsule or gummies, here, will give them very good skin.

At this phase of physical development your daughter will also have problems with her body movement. So she might become a little bit jerky and goofy and will drop things and forget things and so on. So it’s very important to be patient with her and not get angry at mistakes that she might make.

So at this phase it’s important to help her set her priorities and make a to do list, perhaps. And it’s good that she makes it herself, so that realizes that she’s now responsible person.

Now it’s the time to talk about sexuality and how sex happens. At the age of around nine or ten the child fully understands that people have sex. So you can explain to her the importance of sex in reproduction. Use scientific terms and a very serious attitude, and in the meantime a very respectful attitude of the role of sexuality in our lives. You are the source of information, and be sure that if she doesn’t know from you, she will know from other sources. So you’d better tell here the good information that you want her to know

You can give your daughter the values you would like to give her, about virginity, for example, but it’s very important that you don’t scare her of, for example doing sports because she might lose her virginity. The idea is to explain to her that sexual intercourse would affect virginity, but it’s very important, and even more important, to know about sexually transmitted infections. So, she should be aware of the sexually transmitted diseases and the possible ways of getting pregnant, not only be afraid of virginity and losing it.

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THE EMOTIONAL ASPECTS

The emotional aspects of puberty are mainly involving the mood and identity of the child. The girl will have a lot of mood swings because of those hormones, so please put up with her and be a loving and caring parent instead of having an opponing position.

Now the identity of the girl is becoming clear and obvious within the family especially. So her identity forming, at this phase it’s very important that you are focused on this, in a sense of being a positive supporter for her. So what you do is that you are telling her how much you are proud of her and explain to her her role in the family. She’s for example, perhaps, the big sister, the small sister or the middle sister. She is responsible for doing things around the house that are her tasks. So all this identity feelings that she is developing should be your focus as a parent.

Also the fact that she needs emotional and mental supporters all the time. You need to work on that every day.

The decision making process, also. She needs to understand that she can make her own decisions now. And she will start rejecting your authority. That’s okay. Put up with that and support her in it.

The daughter will also start to fall in love and feel emotionally and physically attracted to movie stars or maybe other kids around the block or whatever. So, you have to respect this phase and not make fun of her taste or tell her that it’s not good to be in love with a guy or whatever. So you have to be also positive about her feelings towards the other sex.

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THE SOCIAL ASPECTS

The social aspects of development include the guidelines and the rules that you have to set for your child in order to be able to deal with the society in the best way possible.

You also have to set your rules about mixing with boys and whether you need to talk to her about having sex, and birth control. It’s good to know from her what she’s doing, and of course you should set the limits whether this is acceptable or not.

Remember that peer pressure can cause a lot of situations for her that she would not be able to judge whether it’s right or wrong. So it’s better to know from you whether things are acceptable or not when you are not around. Like when they’re outside the house and going out to party or whatever, she needs to know what’s good and what’s not from you, not from her friends.

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This was a brief discussion of the aspects of development of the child around the puberty time. There is a detailed video about menstruation, if you’d like to look at it, and for more information about personal care during menstruation.

I wish you all the best of health!

Alyaa Gad

Birth Control-Hormonal: Pills

Hormonal or chemical birth control pills will be explained in this video, with the pros and cons of each type. But before I demonstrate the different types, I would like to explain to you how hormonal birth control pills work.

When a lady is pregnant, ovulation (or egg release) does not occur. That’s how our body’s system normally works. The hormones in a woman’s body are balanced in a certain way that makes the hormones that stimulate the release of the eggs – called the ovulation hormones – to become inactive during pregnancy. So we thought: If we give the woman pregnancy hormones in pills, we will be able to inhibit ovulation, in other words: to stop it from happening, which, in turn, would prevent the pregnancy to occur. So the scientists decided to put the pregnancy hormone and the female hormone in a pill.

This gives us an idea about the first type of birth control pills. This type consists of synthetic forms of hormones – the pregnancy hormone progesterone (called progestin) and the female hormone oestrogen.

On the other hand there’s another type of birth control pills that consists of the pregnancy hormone only, and in a very small amount. It is called the mini Pill or the Progesterone-Only Pill (P.O.P.).

The pills I will talk about are not the only hormonal birth control methods. We can take other forms of chemical or birth control at the doctor’s office, which would have the same mechanism of action.

So, back to the pills. Let me explain them now.

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Let’s start with a combined pill. “Combined” because it has a combination of hormones. Let’s know more about it. The combined pill consists of progestin – a synthetic progesterone (the pregnancy hormone) – and oestrogen (the female hormone). You will need to take a pill daily for 21 days, starting from the 7th day of your menstruation. Even if you’re still bleeding, you must start using the pill. Take a pill daily for 21 days and stop the pill for 7 days, taking into consideration that your period cycle is 28 days.

The combined pill is a good birth control choice in cases of:

  • You don’t mind to take hormones for birth control
  • You usually suffer from pains [I’m not sure about what comes here à 2:40] during menstruating, since it will ease the dysmenorrhea.
  • If your period is not regular, this will regulate it.
  • You bleed heavily during the period: it will decrease the amount of bleeding, which in turn might prevent you from becoming anaemic.
  • If you have acne: this might improve your skin condition.
  • You’re not a smoker

The combined pills are not good if you

… don’t wish to take any hormones

… are Breastfeeding

… are a heart patient

… have hypertension or high blood pressure

… have risk of thrombosis or atherosclerosis

… have had diabetes for more than 20 years

… have a liver or gall bladder disease

… have a history of breast cancer in the past 5 years

… are suffering from recurrent migraines or have the symptoms that proceed migraine, called the aura

… are overweight

… have been taking medications such as antibiotics, epilepsy medications or antidepressants

All these may weaken the effect of the combined pill. Always read the patient information leaflets. This birth control method is 99% effective, on condition that the pill is taken on the same time every day.

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The other type is the mini Pill or the pill that has progestin only, which is the synthetic form of the pregnancy hormone progesterone. Let’s have a look.

The mini Pill or P.O.P. is consisting of synthetic progesterone, which is one of the pregnancy hormones. Take one pill at the same time every day from the 5th day of your menstruation. Do not forget to take it at the same time daily, to make sure it’s ultimately working.

The mini Pill is a good choice if you…

… don’t mind to take hormones

… have an irregular period

… are breastfeeding

… are a smoker

… are aged 35 or older

… suffer from menstruation problems

The mini Pill is not a good choice if you

… do not prefer to take hormones

… do not remember to take the pill daily or do not wish to bother remembering it everyday

… had breast or liver cancer

… have had polycystic ovaries or ovarian cysts

… have experienced ectopic pregnancy, which is pregnancy outside the uterus

… had vaginal bleeding for unknown reasons (like bleeding between two regular periods or after sexual intercourse)

… do not wish to have any chances in your menstrual periods

This birth control method is 99% effective if taken as prescribed.

In case of an emergency you can take one pill that has a concentrated amount of the pregnancy hormone. So your body will think that you are pregnant and ovulation or implantation will be prevented.

When do these emergency cases happen? Might you forget to take one of your pills on time? Or if you’re not using any birth control methods and had unprotected sexual intercourse, you can take the morning after pill.

So, again, let’s see when this morning after pill can come in handy:

It’s an emergency birth control pill, and you can use it…

… when you have unsafe sexual intercourse, like when you’ve had intercourse and your partner is not using a condom

… when the condom brakes during sex

… if you used the birth control pills the wrong way or forgot to take one

… in cases of rape

This morning after pill is available at the pharmacies. It is best to be used within 72 hours after sexual intercourse. The morning after pill package might contain one or two pills, but most of the times one pill is enough. Please make sure that you read the patient information leaflet before use.

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I wish you the best of health!

Alyaa Gad

Female Condom

The equivalent of a male condom for women’s use is a female condom. A woman can use it to protect herself against most sexually transmitted diseases or to prevent unwanted pregnancy. In this video, I’m going to explain to you, how to use a female condom.

When you buy the female condom, you’ll find three to five condoms in the box. Use only one at a time. Massage the pack to make sure that the lotion is distributed evenly within the condom. Find a sign – usually an arrow – at which you can tear open the wrapper. Open the wrapper, tearing from the arrow, in a straight line, along the side, till the end. Take the condom out of the wrapper.

You’ll find that the condom has an open end and a closed end with a ring. Hold the ring at the closed end between the thumb and the rest of your fingers, so it would be squeezed flat. Hold the condom at the ring and make the open end directing downwards. Now, open the legs and insert the condom into the vagina. Make sure that the condom is inserted at a proper depth inside vagina, and that there is a part left outside to cover the labia.

A female condom can be inserted up to eight hours before sexual intercourse. After intercourse, twist the outside part several times, then pull it out of the vagina. Now you can wrap the condom in a tissue and dispose it in the garbage can, and not in the toilet

Female condoms are an excellent way to prevent pregnancy and protect you from most sexually transmitted infections. So use it, when you need it.

I wish you a healthy life!

Alyaa Gad

Vaginal Secretions

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Types of STDs

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Gynaecomastia

Gynecomastia is a problem that could occur at any age, from a newborn baby to a teenager or even an older man. The problem highly affects the self-confidence of many men who might for example stop going swimming because of their negative body image. Gynecomastia however, doesn’t affect the self-confidence only. It has other related issues that I would like to bring your attention to.

Breast enlargement could happen due to a pathological reason, which means that it could be a sign of a serious disease, especially if it appears acutely. In other words, if the patient has had no history with a bigger size of his breast and then it became suddenly enlarged. So always bear in mind that the sudden enlargement of a man’s breast could be a warning sign. And that is why I’d like to bring your attention to this aspect of your health.

In order to better understand Gynecomastia we need to first get to know the anatomy of the mammary gland, which is the gland of the breast. As you can see here on the board, this is a female breast and a male breast. In both cases they have the same components. They do? Yes! They have the same components. The only difference is the size. So let’s see: Both male and female breasts have skin, fat (colored in green here, under the skin), and then milk ducts and milk glands, or mammary glands. This is a side view of the breast and these yellow circles seen here are the rips. The pink is the muscle behind the breast. Here are the milk ducts and the mammary glands – so yes, even males have them too, but they’re atrophied because men don’t need to use them. And of course they can be seen larger in the female body.

In this case we can say that the Gynecomastia appears in one of two ways, either in the fat that is in the breast, or in the mammary (or milk) glands. This is why it’s very important to know the cause of the enlargement of the breast. Is the increase in the breast size due to the fat or is it because of the mammary glands? The only person who could specify the reason is your doctor, via medical checkup.

The first reason, enlargement due to fat deposition, is mostly a result of extra-weight. So when a male is overweight and has a bigger than normal breast size and this increase of the size of the breast is homogenously or evenly distributed, which means that it can be observed in the breast as a whole, we say it’s a breast enlargement due to fat deposits, and we would initially recommend that the patient reduces his weight.

So let’s have a look at this. As you can see here, one breast is enlarged while the other one is only enlarged in the area around the nipple, called the areola. Hence, we suspect that this enlargement is due to a problem in the mammary glands shown here. This is a result of the second reason why the male breast could be enlarged, which is hormones. This appearance means that there is some imbalance in the patient’s hormones, which causes the male hormones to become less effective or the female hormones to become more effective. And this has caused enlargement of the breast. This is why when your doctor first examines you he/she will manually check the breast and then will ask for a blood test to check for any hormonal imbalance. They also may ask for an ultra sound and might need to examine the testicles because they produce the sex hormones that might be of effect on the breast size. After that we need to know if the hormones are coming from a tumor in your body or an organ malfunction, especially the liver or the kidney.

Breast enlargement could also be due to a medication that you’re currently taking, or even something that you’re eating. Some weight loss drugs, anti-depressants, anti-acidity medications, supplements taken by bodybuilders, which could have hormonal content, or drugs like weed or heroin. All of the above can cause hormonal imbalance, and that might lead to breast enlargement.

Unfortunately you could be having these hormones from the food you’re eating. For example some kinds of meat contain hormones. Those hormones were given to the animals for profitability purposes. Chicken or red meat might contain the female hormones and can affect your male functions. That’s why I’d recommend that you pay a lot of attention while buying your food. A safer option is to buy biological products, and if they are too expensive try to minimize the consumption of meats in general. In some places the locally bread animals might be better fed and more natural than those coming from big companies.

After hormonal analysis we would like to make sure that the patient doesn’t have any other health problems in the liver, the kidneys, the testicles or the breast itself, as it might have a tumor. You might also need to recall if you’d ever had, in some point in your life, received a physical trauma on the testicles, because this could affect the function of the testes and therefore the hormones in your body.

So, how is gynecomastia treated?

First of all we need to find out the cause, in the light of a physical examination, the blood test results and perhaps other clinical tests. Then we make sure that the patient reaches a healthy weight by following a diet and a sports program when necessary, so as to reach a lower percentage of body fat. If it has been detected that the breast enlargement in your case is a result of hormonal imbalance due to the gland functions your doctor might prescribe medications. And if the enlargement is cosmetically embarrassing, the patient can opt for surgery and with the modern technology, there is laser surgery for fat removal that obtains very good results. Now, if the size of the glands is the cause of the enlargement, those glands can also be surgically removed. Surgeries to improve the breast appearance must be done by a plastic surgeon or a skilled general surgeon. Don’t be embarrassed to discuss the problem of breast enlargement with your doctor if it’s annoying you or affecting your self-confidence. Because it not only could affect the quality of your life, but also can be a sign of a serious underlying condition. It is very important to seek immediate medical advice if the breast enlargement happens suddenly over the period of days or weeks.

I wish you the best of health!

Alyaa Gad

Easy pregnancy

Couples who are eager to get pregnant often wonder: „How can we make it happen fast?“ In this episode I have some tips and tricks for you to help you get pregnant faster.

Tip #1 is to see your practitioner and consider genetic testing. You’re more likely to have successful pregnancy if your body is healthy. To find out whether you’re able to get pregnant you’ll have to schedule a pre-conception check-up with your doctor or midwife. You may not be able to resolve all health issues immediately, but taking this step as soon as possible will help you conceive faster in the long run.

Tip #2 is to figure out when you ovulate and the best time to have sexual intercourse. The biggest secret to getting pregnant faster is knowing when you ovulate – that is to release an egg from your ovary. Since you normally ovulate once each menstrual cycle there are only a few days out of each cycle when sex can actually lead to pregnancy. You can figure out when you ovulate using different methods. But first you have to understand how the menstrual cycle works. Supposed that these are the days of the month and that the menstrual cycle is regular of 28 days. This is the thickness of the uterine wall. It means that when the uterine wall is thin there’s no ovulation and no chance for pregnancy. When it’s approaching its thickest, it’s perfect time for ovulation and fertilisation. This curve shows the thickness of the uterine wall by days passing. So the first day of your menstrual cycle is the first day that you see blood. The first day of bleeding is your first day of your menstrual cycle. Just before that day your uterine wall was at its thickest, from the last period. And now the uterus is starting to shed blood. And the endometrium reaches its lowest thickness when you have finished the menstrual period within 5-7 days. So during this period of time there is no ovulation and no ability to get pregnant. The endometrium or the inner wall of the uterus begins to thicken and form new cells to be ready to conceive at the 14th day. If the cycle is 28 day and regular ovulation will happen on the 14th day. If you’re not sure when your fertile period will be here’s an easy rule of thumb: Have sexual intercourse every other day, starting from the 10th day counting from the first day of menstrual bleeding. If you want to have sex more often than every other day, that’s fine, but it won’t help you conceive faster. It won’t hurt either. It means that sexual intercourse around the 14th day is the best for baby making. If you notice that you have irregular periods over the course of several months, pinpointing ovulation could be difficult. Ask your doctor for advice.

Tip #3: Lay low after sexual intercourse. An old-fashioned advice is to lie in bed with your feet in the air after having sex to increase your chances of getting pregnant. It’s good advice to lie in bed for 10-15 minutes after intercourse. You don’t necessarily need your feet in the air, but do so if you like it. There are also applications that can help you calculate your ovulation day. Once you know when your egg will be released from your ovary you can plan to have sex during the most fertile days. From three days before ovulation through the day of ovulation.

Tip #4: Have a healthy lifestyle. Both of you. Sperms have their best shot at fertilising eggs when they’re healthy, strong and plentiful. That’s why it’s very important, for the husband as well, to have a healthy lifestyle. So for both of you, I would advise you to cut back on alcohol, tobacco and recreational drugs, to eat enough of certain key nutrients like zinc, folic acids, calcium, vitamin c and d and remember, that you would dramatically reduce the risk of certain birth defects if you begin taking folic acids at least one month before you start trying to conceive.

Best of luck!

Alyaa Gad

Masturbation Addiction

Masturbation, or self-pleasuring, is a natural sexual act. Almost everyone has masturbated during the course of their life. The problem arises only if masturbation becomes an addiction. An addiction that would result in a lack of self-confidence, social isolation, or the feeling that your energy is low and wasted.

If you find that too frequent masturbation is negatively affecting other aspects of your life, you might want to consider that you are addicted to masturbation, and for this reason you would need a treatment programme. This treatment programme is a sort of CBT, that’s Cognitive Behavioural Therapy. It depends on changing the way you think, and you can start to apply it by yourself. The following tips will help you in the treatment of masturbation addiction.

Stop feeling guilty. Self-loathing and negative thoughts about yourself are the wrong way to think, they are the wrong feelings. Masturbation is normal. Almost all women and men have masturbated at some point in their lives. The point is that you should masturbate within a normal rate and in a harmless way.

Avoid all triggers that tempt you to masturbate. For example, avoid or minimize watching pornography. Ask a friend to delete porn movies from your computer. Set up anti-pornography applications, and type the passwords with your eyes closed, or ask a friend to do this for you. And finally, get rid of all your porn magazines.

If you usually prefer to masturbate in the bathroom, as soon as you get the desire to masturbate, change the water temperature. A cooler water degree will make you want to get out of the bathroom as soon as possible.

If you are in bed and you have the desire to masturbate, try doing something else. For example, jump out of the bed and do some push-ups. Or call a friend. Just try do get yourself distracted before you fall asleep.

During your free time, go out with your friends and do some activities with them, or if you’re staying with your family, watch movies and be sociable with them. Move with your computer to sit where your family is usually sitting, for example in the living room or in the kitchen, or when possible, leave the window or the door of your room opened, so that you always have the feeling that someone may see you if you masturbate. Try to volunteer and engage yourself in social activities to be always busy. Try to avoid being alone in the house.

Sports and physical activities will make you exhausted by the end of the day, and want to sleep. Sport a lot and stay active.

If you live alone, try to get a pet – not an elephant of course – so that you avoid the feeling of being lonely. And perhaps you can go for a walk whenever the urge comes.

Always consider that you have the ability to overcome the addiction problem. If you have relapsed, start over again. Don’t give up! You can do it in the end, even it if takes you years of trying.

Masturbate once a day and chose a good time and a good place. You have to be mentally relaxed, that’s very important, so that your erection would take a healthy period of time. And it’s also a good exercise for your penile muscles. Don’t masturbate in a violent or a painful way, as this will affect your relationship wit your future wife. Do it smoothly, slowly and softly. And you can use gel if you want. It’s healthier to get used to a smooth style that would be pleasant to your future wife.

Remember: The act of masturbation is not a sin. It is not a problem. The problem might only be with addiction. Don’t hate yourself or feel guilty, and be sure that you’re able to overcome masturbation addiction, and that you will, if you set your mind to it.

I wish you a healthy life! All the best!

Alyaa Gad

Vagina Talk

This video is especially for my dear girls on their way to becoming grown women. I shall explain to you certain facts that you should know about your vagina so you can enjoy a healthy sexual life.

Basically there are three openings at the bottom of a woman’s body. First there’s an opening to allow passage of urine, and then there’s an opening for the vagina, and the third is that of the anus. The vaginal opening may be hard to find when you’re trying to find it for the first time. You can hold a mirror in front of your body and try to find it. It’s exactly the middle opening in the bottom of the body.

Never douche inside the vagina or use soap to clean it. The vagina can be kept clean only by using water and mildly acidic solutions. You should clean the vagina only from the outside and never use soap.

It is healthier to wear cotton underwear, as it would reduce the risk of getting vaginal fungal infections. And it will protect you from getting bad odours.

The shape and colour of the vaginal lips (also called labia majora and minora) is different from one woman to the other. Do not use what you might see in pornographic films as a reference, since many of these women are probably using makeup or have done cosmetic surgeries. If you feel that something isn’t looking normal consult your doctor.

Some women with darker skin tones are unhappy with the skin colour surrounding the vagina, but you have to remember that this is completely normal. The colour of the labia is dark like the colour of the nipples. You can use special creams of trusted brand names to help you lighten the skin colour, but avoid using creams for a long period of time.

If you are not satisfied about the shape of the vagina, there’re corrective surgeries that will be done after your own consent.

The amount of vaginal discharge differs from one woman to the other, but it’s important that you observe its colour and odour. If the colour changes from white or light brown to yellow or dark brown, or blue, or green, this is not normal. If the odour changes to fishy or cheesy, this can be a sign of vaginal infection.

The vagina is made up of walls which contain muscles. With exercising the vaginal muscles you can improve your sexual performance. There are certain exercises known as Kegel Exercise by which you can improve the vaginal muscles, especially after giving birth.

If you are searching for your G-spot, it is present in the front wall of the vagina, but it’s not easy to find, in some women. It is linked to sexual arousal in certain sex positions. Be patient. Not all women find it easy to find the G-spot and not all women all reach orgasm every time thru their G-spot

Having a bikini wax is your own decision, and you should not be influenced by cultural attitudes. You must know that bikini hair protects you from bacteria, and there is no need to epilate it. For diabetic ladies my advice it not to remove the hair from its roots, because it may get infected and that may be fatal, in some patients. For all those who remove hair from the roots, you have to clean thoroughly with alcohol before and after, to minimize the risk of getting an infection. If you are diabetic, I’d recommend that you shave rather than removing the hair from the roots.

If you are suffering from vaginal dryness, might affect your sexual life. You can try applying lubricating gel, which is available at the pharmacies.

The gynaecologist will examine you only after your consent. If you are virgin, your gynaecologist will not do anything that would harm your virginity. For example, she will do a pelvic ultra sound thru the abdomen, or collect urine or blood samples. Nothing will be done without your informed consent.

Sometimes after vaginal childbirth the vaginal walls may change, and this might affect your sexual life in a negative way. There’re surgical solutions, so always consult your doctor if you have any problems with your sexual life after giving birth.

Some women may notice passing masses of blood during their period. This is normal. This indicates that blood is clotted, so that you do not lose too much blood. However, if you notice the passage of large, frequent masses, and you feel tired or have fainted sometimes, I’d recommend that you consult your doctor about it. But in general, small masses of blood during you period is normal, and you should not worry about it.

Sexual intercourse does not cause pain, and it is supposed to make you happy and relaxed. If there is something wrong during intercourse, such as feeling uncomfortable, feeling pain, or bleeding you should discuss it with your husband and a doctor’s visit should help you solve the problem.

Menstrual pads should be kept in dry places, away from the humidity of the bathroom, as this would prevent the growth of bacteria in them and does prevent several health problems, such as toxic shock syndrome. It is advisable that you change your pad every four hours if possible, especially on hot days. If there is more blood, you can change it every two hours.

This was a summary of some important facts that you should know about the vaginal health.

I wish you a healthy and a happy life.

Alyaa Gad

Vaginosis

Vaginal infections are common in women at all ages, but many are embarrassed to consult a doctor. This video is about vaginal infections, their causes and some home treatments, and will instruct you on when you should see a doctor if necessary.

There are two common types of vaginal infections. There’s the fungal and there is the bacterial type. And the treatment is different for each of them. If your friend or sister complains of similar symptoms and recommends certain medications, do not take them, because you may have similar symptoms but different causes. She may have fungal infection and you may have a bacterial infection or vice versa. And that’s why the same treatment for different people will be ineffective.

What causes vaginal infections? Many women think that washing the vagina using soap is a good thing, which is not right, as it is harmful to your vagina because it lowers the vaginal immunity. Soap, being alkaline, affects the acidic medium in the vagina. That’s why I would always advise my patients not to wash the inside of the vagina, even with water, as a vagina is able to clean itself. You should only wash the outer part of the vagina, and there is no need to use soap at all.

Douching or inserting chemicals into the vagina is one of the most important causes of vaginal infections, especially fungal infections. It is quite enough to wash the outer part of the vagina with water only, or you can use a solution of diluted vinegar, or yogurt. Always dry properly, because fungal growth increases in humid conditions.

The second cause of vaginal infections is lowered or weak immunity. Generally, if you are under psychological stress, or if you do not sleep enough or well, or if you’re not eating a healthy diet, or if you’re taking antibiotics or other medications like corticosteroids – all these will lower your immunity and cause vaginal infections.

Another cause of having vaginal infections is having multiple sexual partners, or if your partner has other sexual partners.

Also eating excess sugars and carbohydrates in general, such as pasta, rice, cakes, chocolate – all this will lower your vaginal immunity.

Bacterial infections may affect your reproductive system in the future and may cause problems with infertility, because the infection might spread to the uterus and form uterine adhesions. That would affect your fertility. That’s why if you suffer from vaginal bacterial infections at a young age I’d recommend that you treat the problem before planning to start a family.

As I said before, symptoms can be similar in bacterial and vaginal infections. Both bacterial and vaginal infections cause severe itching, abnormal vaginal secretions with different colours, like sometimes you can have it blue or green. The normal colour discharge is white or off white, sometimes yellowish. Or it could be light brown around your period time.

If you also notice any unpleasant odour – like fishy or cheesy odour – this is a sign of infection.

Any change of the odour or colour of vaginal discharge indicates a disorder and you should seek medical advice. 

What are the complications that you can expect from vaginal infections? So, what can happen if they are left untreated?

An important cause of uterine and fallopian tube infections can be due to a vaginal infection. These infections may affect your fertility in the future or may cause abortion du to uterine adhesions in long-standing untreated vaginal infections.

Secondly, if you are pregnant and you left your vaginal infection untreated and decided to have a vaginal birth or caesarean section, in both cases you might have a wound, and a wound might be infected, and then you could have postpartum problems like postpartum fever, and this can be fatal.

Vaginal infections can also affect your sexual life, because the unpleasant odour might be disturbing for your partner. You also might be suffering from painful sexual intercourse, with vaginal infections.

The treatment basically depends on changing your lifestyle, by eating a healthy diet, sleeping well, having good quality sleep, lowering the intake of carbohydrates and sugars, avoiding douching and using soap to wash the vagina. You can only wash the outer part of the vagina using water or some diluted vinegar solution. Nothing else. No soap.

Unfortunately vaginal infection may increase during hot days, so make sure that you wear cotton underwear.

Also if you’re overweight, reducing your body weight will positively affect your overall health, including your vaginal health.

After having tried a healthy lifestyle, and if the infection persists, you should consult your doctor, who will prescribe an antibiotic in case of serious vaginal or bacterial [also here (?)] infections. Do not feel ashamed, feel free to discuss everything with your doctor or trusted person, and take good care of your health.

I wish you all the best! 

Alyaa Gad