OBGYNs are experts at diagnosing and treating problems with the female reproductive tract. In order to do their jobs well, they rely on information and feedback from their patients. This can be difficult when those patients are a little uncomfortable discussing such things with their OBGYN.
It is not uncommon to feel a little self-conscious when talking to your doctor about these body parts. However, it's important that you make an effort to move past this discomfort so you can give your OBGYN a clear idea of what you're dealing with and what they need to treat. Here are some ways of doing that.
1. Practice saying certain terms when you're alone.
If using anatomical terminology like "vagina" and "uterus" makes you feel uncomfortable, try doing so when you're alone. Once you become confident using these words by yourself, try saying them around a trusted friend or your partner. Then, when you get to the OBGYN's office and find that you need to use these words, doing so won't feel so awkward or unusual. As you practice, remember that these are simply words for body parts; they're really no different from words like "toes" and "hands" when used in a medical context.
2. Talk to someone else about your actual concerns.
If you have a friend or a partner who you are comfortable with speaking openly around, try talking to them about why you feel so self-conscious at the OBGYN's office. Often, putting your fears into words helps you realize how unfounded they are. Your friend may also offer feedback to help dissuade your concerns. For example, if you're worried the OBGYN will think you're being dramatic for complaining about cramps, your friend can remind you that your doctor is completely accustomed to these conversations and won't judge you for them.
3. Bring someone with you.
Some people feel less self-conscious when they attend their OBGYN visit alone. But others feel more comfortable when they bring their partner or a trusted friend along. If you feel better with someone else in the room, bring them along. Some OBGYNs may want prior notice if you plan on doing this, but they'll be okay with it as long as they're informed. Your companion can stay by your head and reassure you during the exam and other testing. They may even be able to ask some questions that you don't feel confident asking yourself.
Visiting the OBGYN can be stressful for some women. With the tips above, you can make sure your visit is informative and helpful in spite of that stress. For more information, contact a local gynecologist.