Indian Women’s Health issues and Solutions
A woman is said to be one of the most beautiful creations of God and she certainly is because she is not only blessed with physical beauty but she has innate features and virtues of love, care, compassion, tolerance, strength, courage and patience. A woman plays numerous of roles in her life with her utmost interest; she is a mother, daughter, sister, wife and a friend. She spreads love and compassion in all her relationships; she is a true projection of divine love. She unites a family, builds up a home, makes a man from a boy, she is behind her husband’s success, she is a guide, and a motivator. Without a woman one cannot visualize a life and think of having a family.
In her various roles she takes care of everyone around her. When she is a homemaker her whole time is devoted to home making and taking care of her family and when she is working she tries her best to balance her home and work together. A woman is always concerned for other’s well-being and in this concern she usually forgets about her wellness. She is always least attentive for her health and fitness. Especially in India, women are super busy; they have various tasks and activities to do. However, today in urban cities the trend has been little changed but in villages, women still do each and every home chore by themselves.
In this article we would discuss about the health issues with women they are facing nowadays. As I said above that, women always forget about their wellness and fitness which surely affects their efficiency in a long run. Among the health issues with women, some are natural and few are caused by a little carelessness in the daily life routine. Besides the naturally caused health issues there are other issues with women which arise due to a messed up lifestyle. Today the lifestyle has been entirely changed, in urban cities; women (working or non working) rely on maids to finish their home chores. Their life is somewhere less disorganized and lazy. There is an ample of time left that can be utilized properly at least for the wellness but there are very few women who think this way! Laziness and carelessness invite many new physical problems and then, their time is consumed in taking medicine and treatments.
Woman takes care of everyone but who is there to take care of her and when she is ill or suffers from some problem, then who is responsible for her recovery? It is actually her family members and friends who should take care of her, and when we talk about this matter in a broader term the Government is also responsible to take care of the women of the society and the country. The women of India are so great, they are the idols of sacrifice, humanity, bravery and wisdom. Indian history has witnessed so great and magnificent women who had beautified the country with their great virtues and actions. They had always been active in the society in many forms and roles and simultaneously had witnessed various discriminations and deprivations in terms of the Rights, Facilities, and nutrition and so on. Hence, it is a social responsibility of the government and the society also, to fulfil their duties towards the women. In fact it is one of an important part of the development task. Health issues with women are of a greater concern and they should be dealt with seriously. Women play an indispensable role in the society which is usually neglected but still their health issues must not be ignored. Women’s health should be treated in a proper manner and they should also be counselled well so that they themselves become aware and active for their wellness.
Since there are varied kinds of health issues with the women hence we may categorize them as medical conditions, reproductive health, breast health, heart health, bone health and mental health issues. Indian Women’s Health issues are as follows:
- Thyroid Disorders: thyroid is situated in the frontal region of the neck. Thyroid basically releases the hormones that control the body’s metabolic system; and that which involves the degree at which the body burns up the calories. So, when this thyroid gland releases an excess amount of thyroid hormones, the disorder is known as hyperthyroid and when the correct amount or too little hormones are released, it is known as hypothyroid. The thyroid has various symptoms and few are common except the symptom of weight gain in hypothyroidism and weight loss in hyperthyroidism. Other common symptoms are fatigue, abnormalities in metabolism, anxiety or irritation, excessive sweating, palpitations, sleep abnormalities, menstrual disorders, swelling at the back of the neck and muscle weakness. Thyroid disorders are nowadays very common in women. Stress in life adds to these disorders. With the medical consultation one can begin the treatment for thyroid and should not delay it as it can cause many other problems.
- Migraine: migraine is basically a severe and intense kind of headache commonly found in women. It can cause many adverse affects to one’s life and daily routine. However no specific reasons have been found for such headaches but medical practitioners and researchers believe that migraine is caused because of the fluctuation in the balance of the body chemical which is called serotonin. When the level of serotonin falls down, it causes the blood vessels to stretch or to swell which results in the form of a bad unbearable headache. Many girls and women feel to have migraine headaches at their young age, this headache may last for 4 to 72 hours. For some, this headache is at the worst. Symptoms of this headache are not same for everyone. Symptoms of migraine are dull or severe ache on one or both sides of the head, nausea or dizziness, fatigue, irritability from bright lights, odours and noise, sudden cold sweating and disturbance in vision. And it may be triggered due to the few reasons such as; bright lights, strong odours or loud sounds, stress, chilling weather, lack of sleep, disturbed menstrual cycle, certain food items, excessive physical activity, certain medication or contraceptive pills, alcohol and fasting. After following some preventive tips and doctor’s advice migraine can be treated well.
- Back Pain: back pain is one of the most common but serious problems among women. It can be caused due to various reasons such as muscle strain, sprain or slipped disc. It becomes worse for the women who are overweight. Back pain usually persists due to doing the things in wrong postures, while lifting, carrying, sitting and walking in wrong positions. Slipped disc is a serious form of back pain in which the disc like structure of the bone that makes up the spine, gets swollen and further presses the nerves of the spine that creates severe back pain. Slipped disc and back pain can be taken care by following some exercises and precautions. Taking care of the sitting, walking and lifting postures can also help in avoiding the back pain.
- Headache: headache is usually a most commonly complained problem with numerous of young girls and women. There are several factors that give rise to headaches like stress, missing meals, high blood pressure, head injury, dehydrations, low blood sugar, premenstrual syndrome, eye strains, brain tumours and sinusitis. Few of these causes can be controlled but few require medical interventions and treatments. If the headache persists with other symptoms such as fever, stiff neck, pain in ear, vomiting, disturbed vision, loss of consciousness then immediate medical advice is essential. However, by following a healthy and easy lifestyle may help in avoiding such headaches. Avoidance of irritants, intake of meals on proper timings, meditation for de-stressing, taking adequate sleep, taking healthy diets composed of vitamins, proteins and micronutrients, can help in maintaining a headache free life for women.
- Urinary Tract Infection: urinary tract infection (UTI) is mostly found in females than males. The urinary system is comprised of the kidneys that filter waste from the blood, ureters, which transport urine from the kidneys to the bladder and the bladder where the urine is stored. And finally the urine is passed out through the urethra. Mostly the urinary infection persists in the urethra and bladder. Symptoms of urinary infections are; burning sensations during urinating, frequent urges to urinate, sensations of immediate urine but finding difficult to pass in the urine, difficulty in emptying the bladder and bad odour. Drinking plenty of water can help a female in avoiding urine infections but still if it persists for long, surely needs a medical treatment.
- Obesity: obesity; one of the conditions that can make a woman feel miserable. It is a condition in which the body fat of the person increases excessively. And with the advent of excessive fat so many other serious problems arise simultaneously. Few of the major problems are diabetes and high blood pressure. Usually obesity is caused due to the genetic factors or a hormonal imbalance but it can also be caused due the imbalanced lifestyle with no exercise and fitness regime, unhealthy eating habits (excessive junk food intake), certain health condition like hypothyroidism, certain medications like antidepressants, antihypertensive and antipsychotic drugs and pregnancy. Besides diabetes and hypertension, Obesity can cause other complications like osteoarthritis, infertility, liver diseases, cancer, gallstone, depression and sleep disorders.
- Anemia: when the red blood cells reduce in the blood, that condition is known as Anemia. Anemia is measured by the level of hemoglobin in the blood; it is basically a part of red blood cell that carries oxygen to the different parts of the body. In anemia along with the number of red blood cell the hemoglobin level also reduces which results in less oxygen transfer to the body parts and hence the person feels extremely lethargic. The level of hemoglobin in normal and anemic females is as follows :
- Normal Hb levels: 12.3–15.3 g/DL
- Mild anemia: 10.0–11.9 g/DL
- Moderate anemia: 7.0–9.9 g/DL
- Severe anemia: <7.0 g/DL
Anemia is caused by blood loss, under nutrition, pregnancy, and others (chronic disease like AIDS, cancer, kidney diseases, hereditary disease and thalassemia. Some common symptoms of anemia are; weakness, pale skin, dizziness, irritability and brittle nails. It is a serious matter of concern for the women because if it is left untreated it can cause other serious problems for them such as; infertility, premature delivery in pregnancy and severe fainting and mental confusions. However, eating a healthy diet that contains all the nutrients can help in producing better blood and to avoid mild anemia. In severe anemia there is a need to take supplemental nutrients.
- Hemorrhoids: it is also known as piles which are swollen and inflamed veins in the passage of passing the stool (anus and rectum). There are internal hemorrhoids, external and prolapsed hemorrhoids. They can be very painful and worse. If one notices blood during the bowl movement or on the toilet paper should consult the doctor immediately to get sure about is it the hemorrhoid which is bleeding or is there some other health problem. Bleeding from rectum or anus or in the stool should never be ignored. The causes of hemorrhoids are; sitting on the toilet for too long, constipation or diarrhea, overweight, genetic history, in pregnant women from the strain of carrying a baby and by delivery and any other activity that strains the veins of the anus. To avoid this problem one should always avoid having constipation. Eating a rich fiber diet and drinking a lot of fluids and water would help immensely to get rid of/avoid constipation.
- CFS (Chronic fatigue syndrome): chronic fatigue syndrome is a severe form of Lathergy that the females can be suffering from. This syndrome basically starts after or during a particular stressful event. This syndrome is mostly found in females. The major symptom of this problem is extremely long-lasting fatigue. This syndrome may last for 6 months and sometimes more than that. Common symptoms of CFS are; sore throat, headache, unexplained muscle soreness, moving pain in joints, painful areas in the neck or armpits, sleeping disorders, problems with concentration, memory loss, extreme tiredness at the end of the day. This syndrome can create further complications like; isolation, depression, obesity or extreme weight loss, absenteeism, messed up lifestyle. Fatigue is usually considered as common that is why females leave it unnoticed. But over a period of time this surely needs medical intervention.
- Gall Stone: gall stones are solid deposits of cholesterol or pigments formed in the gall bladder. The gall bladder is a storehouse of digestive juices prepared by the liver and it is a bag like organ. These stones can be in powder form or in solid form; they can be in hundred of numbers or one of them. A stone can be as small as a grain or as big as a golf ball. As such there are no specific symptoms of gallstones, one may be unaware of it as long as it is discovered during some medical test still it can show some symptoms of vomiting, nausea and intense pain in the upper or middle of the abdomen. Certain conditions increase the chance to have the gall stones such as; diabetes mellitus, obesity, low calorie diet, heredity, pregnancy, taking birth-control pills and old age. By maintaining the body weight, maintaining healthy eating habits and by regular exercise the risk of gallstones can be reduced. Otherwise in the severe and unbearable pain one needs medical consultation also.
- IBS: IBS stands for irritable bowel syndrome which is a disorder of the intestine. Women are frequently affected by this problem. It is basically the excessive squeezing motion or the lack of squeezing motion of the intestine that makes the food move too promptly or too slowly through it. Common symptoms of this syndrome are; constipation, abdomen pain generally after the bowel movement, diarrhea, gastric tendencies and abdominal bloating, unsatisfactory bowel movements and frequent urges to have bowel movements. Certain conditions can aggravate this problem such as; travelling, stressful situations, eating unhealthy food, certain food items, and during menstrual cycles. There is no cure for IBS only a healthy eating of fiber foods, drinking a lot of fluids, exercises, less intake of caffeine items like tea and coffee can help in avoiding this problem.
- Insomnia: it is basically a sleeping disorder in which the person feels unable in falling asleep or to take a sound sleep. Insomnia has many adverse effects on the person such as; one feels extremely tired due to the lack of sleep, vulnerability to illness, low energy level, poor concentration on work and other things, mood swings. There are few factors that can cause this problem like; stressful conditions and life, illness, too much work pressure, certain medications, age factor, too much heavy dinner, anxiety and depression. Following a balanced sleep routine may help a lot with this problem. One should try to go to bed on an accurate time and that should also be early, eating a light diet at night, avoiding caffeine drinks before sleep, distressing oneself before sleep, a warm shower before going to bed and by avoiding sleep in the day may help immensely in this problem.
- Metabolic disorders: metabolic disorder is characterized by a group of various health problems. These health conditions include; persistent high blood pressure, obesity particularly fat accumulation around the waist, unhealthy cholesterol levels and resistance to Insulin that helps to control the sugar level in the body. This syndrome is caused by the intake of food with high calories and saturated fat, by the absence of physical activities and excessive smoking and taking alcohol. By maintaining healthy lifestyle, taking healthy diet and regular exercise can reduce the risk of metabolic syndrome; otherwise it can create serious complications of diabetes and heart stroke for the person.
Now we move on to the Reproductive health of the women that also comprise a significant part of her holistic health issues. Following are the issues:
REPRODUCTIVE HEALTH ISSUES
- Menstruation/Periods Problems: menstruation or periods shows the beginning of womanhood. It is a process that takes place in the reproductive system of a female. The first period of a female is called menarche that occurs during the age of 10-17. This cycle takes place every month till the female reaches her menopause. For the majority of the females this menstrual cycle or those 3-4 days of periods are very painful. Some of the most common period problems are; a). Premenstrual syndrome (PMS) that takes place before the beginning of each period and shows the symptoms like irritation, headache, bloating, anger, tiredness and food cravings. b). Painful periods (dismenorrhea) this means to have a painful period with the symptoms of cramping and pain in the lower abdomen, pain in lower back, pain radiating in the legs, vomiting, fatigue and fainting headaches. c). Absence of periods (amenorrhea) it means the female never had any period which is a rare condition and caused due to genetic and physical problem. d). Heavy periods (menorrhagia) it means when the female has an excessive bleeding during her periods that can also make her anemic. It is caused due to the hormonal imbalance in the body. e). Unusual bleeding it means when there is unusual bleeding during periods or after sexual intercourse. Homeopathy or naturopathy medicines can be taken for relieving the pain during the periods. Beside this, healthy diet, regular exercise and an easy lifestyle will help the females to cope up with the effects of menstruation every month.
- Uterine Fibroids: uterine fibroids are friendly tumours which develop from the muscles of the uterine wall. They are not generally hazardous and one may be unaware of them until they begin to show worrisome effects. These may show few symptoms like; severe bleeding while menstruation, menstruating days increase in numbers, pain in pelvic area, constipation, backache or pain in legs, frequent urination and fatigue. Genetic history and especially two hormones Estrogen and Progesterone can cause fibroids which produce uterine lining for pregnancy. Rarely fibroids create any problem but they sometimes can create infertility by blocking the Fallopian tubes, interfering with the sperm movement and by preventing the growth of the embryo. Females with fibroids are usually found to be anemic. Medication and surgical removal can be done to treat the fibroids.
- Sexually transmitted diseases (STD): Sexually transmitted diseases are those infections which a female can get after the sex with a person who is already infected with some infections. These infections can pass through vagina, anal intercourse, oral sex or even with the skin contact. Such infections can be severe in females. These infections are caused by viruses, bacteria and parasites. The risk is greater with the person who has sex with an infected person or even with multiple persons. In the absence of preventive measures during sex the risk of such infections also increases. Few common symptoms are; vaginal discharge, itching around the area of the vagina, pain during intercourse, pain in the anus (who have anal sex), pain while urinating, sore throat, frequent fever and body aches, dark urine, loose stool, pale eyes and weight loss. AIDS/HIV is one of the major sexually transmitted diseases. A female can avoid these infections on her part by being alert and aware about her sexual partner hygiene, by keeping her genital parts clean and by using safe preventing methods specifically condoms.
- Menopause: when the period cycle of a female stops permanently, it is called menopause. When a female is missing her periods for a consecutive time of at least 12 months she is said to be on her menopause time. It is a natural process and not a disease but for most of the female menopause doesn’t happen so easily and smoothly. It takes a lot of uncertain period cycles and effects to come into a permanent state of the end. Menopause in a female usually occurs after or during the age of 55 but if it happens before the age of 40 it is a premature menopause. Menopause occurs in a unique way with every female. There is a drastic hormonal change in every female during her menopause that has different effects on them. It can bring mental changes like change in attitude and behaviour, besides the physical changes. Irregular periods, insomnia, fatigue, depression, aggression, changes in sex drives, vaginal dryness, weight gain are few symptoms of menopause. It can also cause osteoporosis and cardiovascular problems in females.
- Polycystic Ovaries Syndrome: this syndrome basically occurs due to the imbalance of hormones. Hormonal imbalance can lead the ovaries to produce more eggs and it also enlarges the size of the ovaries. These eggs turn into cysts. This imbalance can begin at the teen age also. Irregular period or no periods, extra hair growth on the body and acne, obesity and diabetes are the general symptoms of this syndrome.
- Vaginitis: vaginal discharge in a female is basically a healthy process of the body to keep the vagina clean and healthy. It is the discharge that is released by the glands in the vagina and cervix in a fluid form every day. It is discharged in the form of a clear milky fluid that contains old cells. But when one finds certain abnormalities such as excessive discharge, change in the colour of the discharge, foul smell, stained discharge, burning sensations, irritation and itching around the vagina, it is said to be the infection called Vaginitis. It occurs due to an imbalance between the healthy and the unhealthy bacteria in the vagina. Usage of certain soaps around the vagina, diabetes and pregnancy, certain medicines and sexually transmitted disease like Chlamydia and gonorrhea can also cause Vaginitis. There is also a yeast infection that can occur in which the vaginal discharge gets thicker with severe itching and pain. Medical intervention is essential in this infection.
- Infertility: it is a condition where the couple is not able to conceive a baby despite of a proper well timed sexual intercourse. Infertility can occur both in men and women but here we are concentrating upon women infertility. Infertility in women can be caused due to the damage or blockage of Fallopian Tubes, STD sexually transmitted diseases, Polycystic Ovaries Syndrome, premature menopause, uterine fibroids, obesity and cancer. By controlling the body weight, giving up alcohol or smoking, contraceptive pills will help the female in conceiving.
- Female Sexual Dysfunctions: when the woman’s sexual drives reduce and when she does not feel comfortable during or after sex, it is known as female sexual dysfunction. There are four types of female sexual dysfunction; 1). Low sexual desire in which the woman feels less or no sexual desires. 2). Sexual arousal disorder in which the woman doesn’t feel sexually stimulated or aroused. 3). Orgasmic disorder in which the woman feels unable to achieve the orgasm or the climax during sex. 4). A sexual pain disorder in which woman feels pain during or after the sexual intercourse. There are few causes of sexual dysfunction like; high blood pressure or Diabetes, low level of the hormone; Estrogen, excessive alcohol intake, vaginal infections, sexual abuse, depression or anxiety, relationship with partner, certain medications. These dysfunctions need medical consultations. Avoiding alcohol, smoking and doing exercise will help in facing the challenges of this dysfunction.
Breast cancer is nowadays most common in urban Indian women. In India, one out of the twenty six women witness; the problem of breast cancer. It is devastating for a woman to realize that she suffers from breast cancer. But 90% of the cases of breast cancer can be cured fully if detected in the early stage. It is not only physically hurting but a woman feels shattered and agonized during her whole treatment of breast cancer. Doctors and researchers assert that the risk of breast cancer is increasing day by day because of the changes in life styles, early menarche, late menopause, having no children and no breast feeding. Breast cancer can occur either from the lining of the milk carrying ducts which is known as ductal cancer, or from milk producing labels, namely lobular carcinoma. Symptoms of breast cancer are; a painless lump in the breast, thickness in any part of the breast noticed in the recent times, clear or bloody discharge from the nipple, eczema of the nipple or areola and in-drawing of the skin of the breast. The treatment of breast cancer varies from female to female and the type of the breast. The stage of the cancer and type of it will determine the kind of treatment should be given. This cancer is divided into four stages: the 1st and 2nd are low risk and early stages whereas 3rd is the high risk stage and 4th is the last stage where the cancer can surely spread in the rest of the parts of the body. The initial way of treating the breast cancer is the surgical removal of the tumor and the rest of the treatments like chemotherapy, radiation therapy, hormonal therapy play a vital role in the treatment.
HEART HEALTH ISSUES
- Hypertension : hypertension is also called the silent killer because it shows no symptoms but affects the most vital parts of the body like; heart, brain, kidneys that may lead to brain stroke or heart failure. Hypertension is mostly found in the urban women. It is most commonly caused due to a messed up lifestyle, pregnancy, weight gain, menopause, lack of physical exercise, intake of increased salt, smoking, alcohol, family history, stress and age factor. Hypertension can cause complications like, brain stroke, heart failure, eye damage, kidney diseases and blood vessel damage. There is no cure for hypertension but a female can keep a control over it by following a healthy life routine with regular exercises, by taking proper diet and keep a control on the stress level. Smoking and alcohol should be strictly avoided.
- Cholesterol: cholesterol is a wax like substance that is found in all parts of the body. Everybody requires some amount of cholesterol to function in a normal way. It is also involved in the production of cell tissues, vitamin D, making of specific hormones and the elements which help in the digestion of food. The cholesterol which the body needs is produced by the liver. High cholesterol in the blood can increase the risk of heart diseases. There are two types of cholesterol; low density lipoprotein (LDL) also known as bad cholesterol because it increases the risk of heart diseases and second is high density lipoprotein (HDL) also known as good cholesterol as it reduces the risk of heart diseases. High levels of cholesterol can block the arteries; blood vessels may be weakened and can slow down the level of blood and oxygen in the body. Every man and woman should go for a cholesterol test once in a year. The main objective should be to keep a check on the level of LDL. Quitting smoking, avoiding excessive oil and oily food items and regular exercise help in preventing high cholesterol in the body.
BONE HEALTH ISSUE
- Osteoporosis: when there is a reduction of mineral in the bones, particularly in the form of calcium, it gives rise to osteoporosis. Women are generally prone to this problem because besides the age factor menopause also gives rise to this problem. A reduction in the hormone, Estrogen can also lead the female to osteoporosis. Estrogen hormone maintains the bone mass in the young female’s body. A mismatched lifestyle is also responsible to lead the woman to this problem like; less intake of calcium, less physical activity, excess intake of alcohol and caffeine. Calcium and Vitamin D are two most essential nutrients which a woman must intake regularly. Milk should never be missed anyway, should eat a diet rich in calcium and other minerals, taking milk products is also essential for a woman. Regular exercise should be a part of the daily routine if not rigorous then at least walking should never be missed. One should not be harsh and rude with the capacity of her body. Everything should be done with ease and within limits. Doctor’s advice is a must.
MENTAL HEALTH ISSUES
- Depression: it is a state of extreme despair or hopelessness that can affect one’s life to a greater extent. It can occur irrespective of any age, sex or race. Depression may show many symptoms like; lack of interest in daily life activities or another, extreme disappointment and agony, crying without any reason or for small things, restlessness, reduction in appetite, disturbed concentration, fatigue, feeling good for nothing, weight gain or loss, low decision making power, sleeping disorders, headaches or aches in different body parts, negative thought process and gastrointestinal problems. Depression can be caused due to genetic history, stressful life, chronic illness/poor health, postpartum depression, due to hormonal disturbance, excessive alcohol, smoking or drug abuse, and negative personality traits. Medical help, de-stressing techniques, exercises, involvement in affirmative activities, indulging in hobbies and sharing of feelings can help the woman to get rid of her depression.
- Creating balance between family and work: life of women in urban cities is quite challenging now a days. Women of today are aspiring, ambitious and educated; they want to be independent and want to utilize their education for their own well being and also of their family. Now women can also contribute to the family income, they are working and trying to fulfil their personal dreams as well. But in this rush they are constantly trying hard to maintain a balance between their work and family, which is a challenging task for them. They cannot ignore their responsibilities towards each member of the family and can’t be irresponsible on her professional front. Her day begins early morning and ends late night during which she is working, fulfilling her duties, taking care of her family and meeting the demands of the outside world. In this whole scenario she gets tired. She has no enough time to take a sound sleep she is constantly rushing. Usually she doesn’t have time for her own self. Office work consumes her eight hours and the rest of the few hours she devotes to her family and kids. She hardly gets any personal time for her own enjoyment and recreational activities. And finally she is tired, exhausted and sometimes disappointed. She cannot blame anyone for this because she has chosen this way for herself by her own choice. She can’t even leave her job because of the fear of losing her independence and source of income. In such a fast and furious life a woman is at a high risk of getting ill, she might be suffering from depression and anxiety. Due to a lesser time she is not able to take proper diet which can make her malnourished. Creating a balance between her family and work is becoming tougher for a woman where she sometimes feels incompetent to satisfy the ever increasing expectations from her.
- Anorexia Nervosa and (Eating disorders): anorexia nervosa is a disorder in a female that makes her too much possessive about being thin. In this urge of being thin she intakes very less amount of food/diet or even avoids taking anything to eat. She tries out rigorous ways to become thin and look slim, she takes diet pills, indulges in excessive exercise, avoids food and literally starves herself that ultimately make her sick.Few are the symptoms of this disorder; dehydration, extreme fatigue, dizziness, fainting, low blood pressure, dry skin, brittle nails, dry and rough hair, abnormally thin, period’s irregularities. This disorder is usually found in young girls of the age 16-25 yrs. Females having the anorexia nervosa disorder show certain abnormal behaviour as well such as; they are fussy about calorie intake, they vomit the food and takes diet pills, over attentive for their body weight tend to check their weight once or twice a day, do over exercise, show very less or no emotions, over thinking about body weight, unable to concentrate over other activities. Consulting the doctor can finally help them to manage their disorder and their health together.
Women’s health issues should not be ignored, because their role is as essential as the role of men in the society and the country. Their health issues need to be attended with utmost interest and every area of it should be considered important. Good Health is comprised of many factors mere the increase in medical facilities in the government policies and programs would not do any wonders, women’s health and nutrition status should be treated in a holistic way. Achieving a good health for women is not impossible it just need to be prioritized and handled with dedication. And in this task there is a big role to be played by the government, NGOs’ and the civil society.
Solutions to women’s health issues
- Regular follow Up of Policies and Programs: a regular follow up of all the governmental policies and programs is necessary for realizing the results. With a regular follow up it would be easy to detect; how much has been accomplished and how much has been remained. There should be officers who work through a chain and should be accountable to the authorities. Follow up is always essential for any policy and programs because it create a transparency in the implementation, expectations and the opportunities.
- Fund raisings for the organizations: government should raise funds easily and quickly for those organizations and NGO’s that aim to improve the condition of the women in the society. And particularly for those activities and tasks that aim to make the health of the women, better. Further funds should be properly channelized and utilized in appropriate activities like providing free medical facilities for women, free medical aids, and incentives to women for adopting family planning with their families.
- Increase in Awareness Programs: women health issues need to be understood and at least be acknowledged by the people of the country and the society. People are not aware of the different health issues with the women hence they are unable to face and handle them with ease. Families, friends, children and relatives are usually unaware of the issues the woman in their homes, is going through. Hence they should be acknowledged about the maternal, medical conditions and mental problems; a woman goes through during her life span. Government and NGOs’ should organize such awareness programs at different levels and places like schools, colleges, offices and in fact at the recreational places where a huge mass can be approached easily.
- NGOs’ Role: NGOs’ has a big role to play in dealing with the health issues with women. They can help the government in spreading awareness, by providing volunteers and at their own level they can organize many social programs through which they can promote facilities, knowledge, food, free medical checkups and support among the women especially who belong to the lower class groups, live in villages and remote areas. Women living in villages need to be acknowledged and encouraged to follow family planning programs initiated by the government. Volunteers can spread information about the health issues among the women of the villages.
- More Appointments of female doctors in villages: in villages, remote areas and slums the conditions of women are not good. They are malnourished, deprived, and unaware. They are unaware about the outcomes of ignoring their maternal, medical and mental health. They ignore their regular medical check-up and treatments not only because they are ignorant but also because there are very less or no female doctors in their areas to treat them. Women feel shy to visit the male doctors and feel unable to share their problems with them. Hence more female doctors should be appointed in the hospitals of those villages. In fact female’s doctors should especially be encouraged and provided good incentives and off course security to do their medical practices in such areas.
- Improving Women’s Socioeconomic Status: since ages women have been socially and economically weak in the society. Their roles have already been planned by the society which does not allow them to become independent and secured. This is one of the reasons why the health aspect of women is neglected. Most of the women are dependent on their families for their livelihood. And this dependency factor restricts them from concentrating on their health and nutrition. This trend is very old especially in the villages and lower class groups where women are restricted and trapped in the dominance of their families and males members. Government and NGO’s should provide opportunities to each and every woman of the society to become economically independent. This would help them to upgrade their social status as well. There should be a number of occupational opportunities, those who are not educated should be given the occupations which involve physical labour, Monteray aids should be given to those women so that they can commence some small business or occupation at home only. When a woman is independent she feels free to choose and act the way she wants and then she can take care of herself in a required way as well.
- Social Responsibility: the biggest responsibility of the society towards women is to give due respect, attention and recognition for her roles, actions and health. A woman’s life is already devoted to her family and the society but it is also the duty of society to take care of the important aspects of the women’s life. Society should be aware and considerate towards the initiatives taken by the government and the NGO’s for the well being of women. Society should act enthusiastically to support the government in its process and should show active participation. Without the help of the people of the society, even the plans and programs of the government would remain unfulfilled. Women’s health issues should be one of the agenda of the society. It should understand that women’s health issues are in a way a block in the way of its growth. Hence society should be active in organizing and managing those activities that promote the importance of women’s health all around.
- Personal Responsibility: woman herself is also responsible for her wellness and fitness. She should herself be concerned with the ways and activities that help her in staying fit and fine. Her priorities should include her healthy diet and fitness also, since she knows she has to bear so many expectations and demands of the family and the people outside the home, she should be more careful in keeping herself perfectly all right to meet all those demands. Any illness or mental pressure should be shared and disclosed. Women have the nature to hide the things but in case of their health they should be open and sensitive. At least once in a year she should go for her overall check up and should discuss her physical or mental problem with the doctor. Taking a balanced diet is very important hence woman should never be ignorant for her diet and nutrients. Regular exercise and fitness activities should always be followed. She should never forget that when she is healthy then only, she can take care of her family.
As a conclusion, women’s health issues are important. At the personal front women should always be careful and cautious of their health because their illness or any health issue would affect their whole family and the outside atmosphere. And not only the family but when the women of a country are not well, the country would have to face a lot of challenges. In fact it seems quite impossible to assert the future and the growth of a country without the contribution of the women. Therefore, a society and the government are also responsible to take care of their women; the well being of the women is a sign of their growth and development. Women have many health issues some are visible which can be treated directly with a medical aid but there are also many mental health issues which the women of today; are facing. There is a constant struggle for women in their families and work to balance their aspirations and relationships. Each woman today is going through some sort of challenge and struggle and she literally needs people to empathize with her and to give her compassion. Family, friends, relatives should be considerate towards the women in their families.
A woman takes care of everyone around her, and all the issues related to her health show that; she also needs your care and concern.
Posted by Jyotsna Gandhi
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