Dr Mini Salunkhe: Is there any way to mitigate the chances of hereditary issues being passed down to my child?

Here are questions from readers that were addressed by leading obstetrician and gynaecologist Dr Mini Salunkhe. The identities of the solution-seekers have been withheld to protect their privacy.

Dear Doctor, I am four months pregnant and I would like to be extremely cautious about my child. Is there any way to mitigate the chances of hereditary issues being passed down to my child? If so what can I do?

Genetic testing is ideally done before you start trying to get pregnant, though couples can get screened in early pregnancy.

Getting tested can help decide the right pre-natal test to be done for your baby. Ethnic background and family history are the main factors which decide the tests for your screening.

Your obstetrician and genetic counsellor will assess these issues and suggest and guide you on the pertinent tests.

Doctor, I am curious about the co-relation of exercising and getting your period. My friend tells me if you exercise regularly, the flow will be less and no pain at all will be felt. Is this true?

Yes, there is a positive co-relation between exercise and the menstrual periods. Exercise lowers the levels of menstrual symptoms and results in the production of pain fighting substances. It also improves the blood circulation and can reduce the incidence of painful menstrual cramps. Additionally, exercise boosts your energy levels when done regularly.

Does every person suffering from PCOD find it hard to conceive? If not, what increases the chances?

No, this is not true. Women having mild PCOD as detected from hormonal levels and Ultrasonography have a good chance of conceiving naturally.

Regular exercise coupled with healthy eating habits has been shown to improve fertility in patients of PCOD. Weight loss is also very helpful to regularise menses and for regular ovulation. You doctor will prescribe you with supplements and medication to tackle the root cause of PCOD. These will boost the fertility rate and help you conceive naturally.

Is it safe to use hair removal creams on the vaginal region? There are lot of contradictory answers on the internet.

One of the most sensitive areas of a woman’s body is the genital area. If you use the patch test first and follow the instructions properly, then hair removal creams may be a good option for you. The other options are of course bikini wax or shaving of the pubic region with a woman’s razor. Both these options are fine if done meticulously and hygienically. Also, trimming of the pubic hair is yet another option that you can consider. You will need to see which options works best for you.

I take this opportunity to wish all my readers a Very Happy Diwali and all good wishes for a healthy and prosperous season.

Thank you, readers, for all the feedback. It’s indeed heartening to know that this column is helping you deal with common concerns and myths associated with women’s health. Do keep writing in with your queries on editorial@pune365.com (please mention ‘For Dr Mini Salunkhe’ in the subject line. I will be more than happy to address them as soon as I can)

Dr Mini Salunkhe

Dr Mini Salunkhe

Dr Mini Salunkhe is a senior gynaecologist practising in Pune for over a decade. Apart from being a private practitioner, she is a consulting obstetrician and gynaecologist at Inamdar Hospital. Dr Salunkhe addresses reader queries every Friday on Pune365.
Dr Mini Salunkhe