• Why Are Cervical Cancer Screenings Important?

    Has your family physician in Atlanta advised you to schedule a cervical cancer screening? If so, then you may have questions about the need for this procedure. Cervical cancer is already invasive by the time a woman experiences any symptoms, such as heavy or prolonged periods, pain during sex, and abnormal bleeding between periods, during menopause, or after sex. It’s for this reason that it’s sometimes referred to as a “silent killer” and why regular screenings are so important.

    The 2 primary methods of screening for cervical cancer include liquid-based cytology (LBC) and the Papanicolaou (Pap) test, also known as a cervical smear or Pap smear. During an LBC screening, the doctor scrapes the cervix with a small brush, and the collected cells are then analyzed for abnormalities in a lab. Pap smears involve scraping the outer opening of the cervix to collect cells which are analyzed for abnormalities under a microscope. Most women between ages 21 and 65 are advised to undergo a cervical cancer screening once every 3 years. If you are overdue for a cervical cancer screening, then consider contacting your local clinic to make an appointment and help protect your health.

    cervical - cancer

  • Precautions to Take Before You Travel This Summer

    Summer is the season of travel, and for many people, this means trips to other countries. Vacations like these offer opportunities to experience other cultures, but they’re also a way to contract local diseases, depending on your destination. If you’re planning to travel internationally this summer, then continue reading to learn what health precautions you should take and the importance of visiting your local travel clinic in Atlanta beforehand. travel - health

    Check Travel Notices

    One of the first steps that you should take when preparing for international travel is to look at the current CDC travel notices , which will alert you to what areas of the world are considered high-risk for disease and which diseases. Non-essential travel to any locations that have a Warning Level 3 should be avoided, due to the high risk to travelers. For Alert Level 2 regions, travelers should practice enhanced precautions, and usual precautions should be followed if you’re traveling to a Watch Level 1 area.

    Recognize Health Concerns

    Depending on what country or countries you’re planning to visit, certain immunizations may be considered standard for travelers. Your doctor can inform you of which immunizations you should consider, but some of the most common ones recommended for American travelers going out of the country include those for malaria, yellow fever, typhoid, and hepatitis A.

    Schedule an Appointment

    After determining what health issues you should be concerned about in your destination of choice, you should consider scheduling an appointment at a clinic that offers immunizations for travel. This precaution isn’t one that you should delay because many immunizations require several weeks before they take effect. Ideally, schedule your clinic appointment 6 to 8 weeks before you plan to leave or as soon as you have your travel itinerary. Finally, keep your immunization records with you while you travel in case you need to show them to local authorities or require medical care while you’re out of the country.

  • A Patient’s Guide to Allergy Skin Testing

    Have you been suffering from watery eyes, sneezing, or hives? If so, then you may be affected by allergies, for which your primary care physician in Atlanta may recommend allergy skin testing. Keep reading to learn about this type of test and what you can expect. allergy - testing

    Why It’s Done

    One of the most important steps toward managing your allergies is understanding what’s causing them. It’s for this reason that doctors often advise their patients to take an allergy skin test. Skin testing allows your doctor to test you for many different allergens in a single clinic appointment.

    How It Works

    Allergy skin testing uses concentrated, liquid forms of some of the most common allergens, such as animal dander, mold, pollen, dust mites, and some foods. When these allergens get under your skin, they may trigger a rash that causes it to itch and become irritated. This process happens when you’re exposed to something that you’re allergic to, and your immune system produces antibodies and chemicals that attempt to fight off the aggravating substance. It’s this reaction that informs your doctor that you’re allergic to a particular allergen.

    What to Expect

    There are 3 primary types of allergy skin tests. During the first, called a scratch test, a nurse or doctor will clean your skin with alcohol, label different areas of your skin with a pen, and then place a drop of each allergen extract on your skin according to the labels. Then, your skin is gently scratched to let the allergen through the skin’s outer layer. Intradermal allergy skin testing involves injecting a small amount of a suspected allergen slightly under the skin. Finally, a patch test may be performed, which involves wearing a patch with the allergen on your back or arm.

    When You’ll Get Your Results

    Scratch and intradermal tests are usually completed in a one-hour clinic appointment, during which your doctor can inform you of what allergens your skin reacted to. Patch tests typically take about 48 hours and are often used to test for delayed reactions.

  • Essential Facts to Know About STDs and Pregnancy

    If you are pregnant, part of protecting the health of your baby is protecting yourself from sexually transmitted disease, or STDs. If you don’t feel comfortable discussing STDs with your maternity care provider, you can visit a walk-in clinic for anonymous STD testing . Here is a look at what you need to know about STDs during pregnancy. STD - pregnancy

    You can contract an STD during pregnancy.

    Some women mistakenly believe that pregnancy offers protection from contracting an STD, but it does not. You have the same risk of developing an STD if you are exposed to one as you would if you were not pregnant. The difference is that STDs can be more aggressive during pregnancy, and they can pose a risk to both you and your baby. If you are not in a mutually monogamous relationship during pregnancy, you need to use protection during every sexual encounter to protect yourself and your baby from STDs.

    STD testing may not be part of your standard maternity care.

    In most cases, STD testing is not automatically performed as part of maternity care. If your doctor does not perform STD screenings as part of your care, consider having a conversation about your risk factors and asking for testing. You can also opt to have anonymous STD testing performed at a walk-in clinic. Keep in mind that the early treatment offers the best protection for you and your baby, so don’t delay getting tested.

    STD treatments are available during pregnancy.

    The way your STD is treated during pregnancy depends on the type of STD you have. Bacterial infections, including gonorrhea and syphilis, can be treated with antibiotics that can be taken during pregnancy. Although viral infections, such as HIV and herpes, can’t be cured, antiviral medications may protect your baby from contracting the disease.

    At Perimeter Clinic, we offer walk-in STD testing in Atlanta to help you get the peace of mind you need for your own health and that of your baby. Visit us any time to begin the confidential testing process, or learn more about anonymous STD testing by calling (678) 904-5611.

  • What All Women Need to Know About Ectopic Pregnancies

    An ectopic pregnancy is a potentially life-threatening condition for women that requires urgent care. Because many women may not have yet even realized they are pregnant when an ectopic pregnancy occurs, it is important to know the symptoms and react quickly, regardless of whether or not you think you could be pregnant. Seek urgent care at a clinic near your Atlanta home if you think you could be experiencing an ectopic pregnancy. Here are the facts every women needs to know. ectopic - pregnancy

    What is an ectopic pregnancy?

    An ectopic pregnancy occurs when a fertilized egg does not travel from the Fallopian tubes to the uterus as expected but instead implants somewhere else in the abdomen. If the ectopic pregnancy is not diagnosed and treated, it can lead to the rupture of your Fallopian tube, which may cause serious internal bleeding that can be life-threatening.

    What are the symptoms of an ectopic pregnancy?

    Typically, unexpected vaginal bleeding and pelvic pain are the first signs of an ectopic pregnancy. As the condition worsens, you may experience nausea, vomiting, sharp cramping, dizziness, and weakness. Some women have pain on one side of their body, while others experience pain in the rectum, neck, or shoulder. Many of the symptoms, particularly the location of the pain, depend on where the egg has implanted. If you experience symptoms, seek urgent care right away, where your doctor can use diagnostic imaging tests to determine if you have an ectopic pregnancy.

    How are ectopic pregnancies treated?

    Ectopic pregnancies can’t be successful, so the fertilized tissue has to be removed. In very early stages of an ectopic pregnancy, an injectable medication can stop the cells from getting larger so that your body can reabsorb them. If the pregnancy has grown too large, then your doctor may need to surgically remove the cells. If your Fallopian tube has ruptured, it may need to be removed as well.

  • Why Yearly Physicals Are Important

    Yearly physicals are the foundation of preventative medicine. They can reduce your risk of suffering from many common illnesses and allow your primary care physician to diagnose problems in their early stages, when they are most treatable. If the limited hours at most medical practices have been keeping you from getting the physical you need, then you should know that you can get an annual physical at an urgent care clinic in Atlanta with extended hours, so your appointment can fit into your schedule. If you’re doubting the importance of adding time for a physical to your busy calendar, here is a look at some of the ways that physicals can impact your health. yearly - physical

    Find out information about your current health

    One part of your physical is a thorough assessment of your current health. During your exam, your physician will evaluate your weight, blood pressure, respiratory health, heart health, and skin health. He or she may also order lab tests to determine your cholesterol, blood glucose, and blood counts. This information creates a picture of how healthy you are today and whether you need to begin any treatments to control emerging health issues, such as medication for high blood pressure.

    Get a picture of your future health risks

    The information about your current health that is collected during your physical also creates a picture of what health problems you could be at risk for in the future, so you can take steps to protect your health. For example, if your weight has crept up and your blood glucose numbers are climbing, your doctor may tell you that you are at risk of developing type 2 diabetes. With this knowledge, you can adopt a healthy eating plan to reduce your weight and cut your chances of developing diabetes.

    Ask questions about your health needs

    A physical is the perfect time to ask your doctor any questions that are on your mind about your health, such as whether you should consider STD testing or if you should consider travel vaccinations for an upcoming trip. Take advantage of this time when you have your doctor’s complete attention to address any health issues that are on your mind.

  • Recovering from an Ankle Sprain

    A sprained ankle occurs when a ligament in the ankle stretches too far or becomes torn. Ankle sprains are an incredibly common type of injury, and they can be quite painful and interfere with your normal activities. If you’re planning to visit an urgent care clinic in Atlanta for this type of injury, then continue reading to learn about recovering from an ankle sprain. sprained - ankle

    Rest
    When it comes to treating ankle sprains, doctors usually advice R.I.C.E. guidelines, which involve rest, ice, compression, and elevation. Your urgent care doctor will inform you that rest will be a critical step in the ligament’s recovery. To do this, you should stay off of your ankle as much as possible and limit the amount of weight that you put on it during the healing process. Your physician may recommend the use of crutches to help you provide your ankle with the rest that it needs.

    Treatment
    In addition to rest, controlling swelling in your ankle is one of the best ways to speed the recovery of your injury. For this reason, your urgent care doctor may recommend that you wear an ankle brace to provide the joint with compression. Wearing a brace can also help support and immobilize the ankle. When applying cold packs for the swelling, you should never put ice directly on your skin. Instead, place a thin piece of cloth between your ankle and the ice pack. Also, do not apply ice for more than 20 minutes each session. Finally, keeping your foot elevated by propping it up above waist or heart level will help control inflammation.

    Rehabilitation
    To help promote the complete healing of your ankle, the ligament injury will require rehabilitation. This step involves restoring the joint’s range of motion, strength, and flexibility following rest and treatment for swelling. Once you can stand on your injured ankle once more, your doctor may prescribe stretches and exercises to help the joint get back to normal. Gradually, you should be able to return to your normal routine and activities.

  • Creating a Travel Medicine Kit

    Did you recently visit your local urgent care clinic or primary care physician for travel vaccinations in Atlanta ? If so, then you may benefit from putting together a travel-friendly med kit. Watch this video to learn what you should include in your medicine kit for travel.

    A reliable thermometer, pain reliever, fever reducer, children’s liquid version of ibuprofen or acetaminophen, and digestive aids should all be included in your travel medicine kit. Also, peppermint, lavender, and tea tree essential oils can be helpful additions. Finally, coconut oil works great as a carrier oil for your essential oil lineup and can be highly beneficial when applied to sunburns, so consider including this in your travel medicine kit.

  • The Benefits of Anonymous STD Testing

    Undergoing regular STD testing is important for a variety of reasons, especially if you are not currently in a monogamous relationship. Regular STD screenings at a clinic in Atlanta can help to ensure that you catch any infections early, when they are easiest to treat. In addition, early detection and treatment may be essential for preventing long-term damage due to a sexually transmitted disease. However, you may feel uncomfortable about having your name attached to STD screening results. The good news is that you can visit a walk-in clinic to undergo anonymous STD testing, letting you maintain discretion while being proactive about your sexual health. std - screening

    Comfort

    With anonymous testing, you can rest easy that your confidentiality will be maintained. The staff at the STD testing clinic will have the necessary training to complete STD screenings while maintaining anonymity, so you will not have to worry about others learning about the results of your STD test. This means that embarrassment or concerns about your reputation should not stop you from undergoing regular screenings.

    Safety

    Using condoms is an essential part of safe sex—but condoms can break, and are not a guarantee against STDs. This means that even if you always practice safe sex, you should still visit a health clinic to ensure that you are healthy. Another reason to undergo anonymous STD testing is that many STDs do not cause symptoms until permanent damage has already occurred, or may never cause noticeable symptoms at all. Seeing a doctor for anonymous STD testing, even if you believe that you are healthy, can help to ensure that any infections are caught while they are most treatable. In addition, completing regular STD screenings can ensure that you are not putting your sexual partner at risk. If you do receive a positive test result, you can undergo treatment and take steps to reduce the risk of spreading the STD to another individual.

  • How to Check for Health-Related Travel Advisories

    Before any trip, checking for health-related travel advisories should be part of the planning process. If you need travel vaccinations in Atlanta , be sure to see a travel medicine provider in enough time before your departure to avoid any delays in your trip.

    The first place to look for health-related travel advisories is the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website . They keep a constantly updated list of travel notices that can help you make decisions about your trip. Areas with Level 1 notices will have a set of recommended precautions, while are areas with Level 2 notices require additional health precautions. The CDC recommends that all non-essential travel to areas with Level 3 notices be avoided.

    If you have a trip planned, check with a clinic doctor to determine if you need travel vaccinations, such as those for typhoid, yellow fever, malaria, or hepatitis A. Taking the time to make sure your trip is a healthy one will keep you and your family safe from illnesses that could derail your travel plans.

    Medicine for Out of Country Travel