The One Ques­tion Docs Hear Most Of­ten

Cosmopolitan (South Africa) - - HEALTH - -JEN­NIFER ASH­TON, OB/GYN

If I have itch­ing and dis­charge, do I definitely have a yeast in­fec­tion?

‘Not nec­es­sar­ily. While these are hall­mark symp­toms, they could also stem from tri­chomo­ni­a­sis (an in­fec­tion caused by a par­a­site) or bac­te­rial vagi­nosis (caused by an over­growth of cer­tain bac­te­ria). In these cases, over-the-counter an­ti­fun­gal cream can ac­tu­ally make your dis­com­fort worse, so your best bet is to see your gy­nae for a di­ag­no­sis be­fore self-treat­ing.’ -SHERRY ROSS, OB/GYN

Can I get preg­nant on my pe­riod?

‘It’s pos­si­ble. Women’s cy­cles vary, and there’s no easy way to know when your ovaries will drop an egg (you’re most fer­tile for roughly six days around ovu­la­tion). If you have a shorter cy­cle or a longer pe­riod, you could the­o­ret­i­cally con­ceive dur­ing your Œlow. To be safe, use BC such as the Pill or con­doms ev­ery time you have sex (es­pe­cially be­cause you may be more sus­cep­ti­ble to STIs dur­ing your pe­riod).’ -AN­DREA CHISHOLM, OB/GYN

Will the Pill make me in­fer­tile?

‘Ab­so­lutely not – this is a myth. The Pill shuts down ovu­la­tion, but as soon as you stop tak­ing it, your brain and ovaries give your body the green light to start up the process again.’

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