For around 6 million years humans have dwelt and evolved on planet Earth. Each manifestation of the beast overlapped with previous, more primitive incarnations. Around 300,000 years ago our current guise, homo sapiens, appeared and became dominant.
Historically, there are evidential indicators that suggest that even early homo sapiens realized that the female of the species had physical health issues, including that of their mental health, unique to their gender.
Early homo sapiens, as hunter-gatherers, are thought to have had a life expectancy of around 30 years, very different from today’s 21st-century homo sapiens. According to the WHO (The World Health Organization), the current global life expectancy average is 72.0 years, that is 74.2 years for females and 69.8 years for males.
As a testament to Thailand’s quality of health care, the average life expectancy in the kingdom is well above the world average. For females, this is, as of 2019, 80.9 years, and for males 73.5. This shows a remarkable increase since 1970 when the average life expectancy across the genders was 61.9 years.
The unique health issues that affect the female of the species has long since been recognized by Thailand’s health care establishments. With that in mind, dedicated women’s health care centers are to be found across the country. Existing on a foundation of medical teams with specialized knowledge, these centers have raised women’s health awareness, improved diagnostics, and treatments, quality of life, and raised life expectancy.
Fertility, Conception, and Pregnancy
Ask anyone what is the difference between the male and the female of the species, and the first thing they point out is the physical form. These physical differences can all be attributed to a very basic need, that being for the species to reproduce. The female reproductive system is intricate and complex and can bring about health issues equal to that.
Development issues and diseases associated with the reproductive system are not uncommon and require specialist medical skills. Problems with the female reproductive system can become apparent at a young age but are more commonly diagnosed post-puberty. From puberty to menopause, many women fall victim to anyone, or more, of a multitude of reproductive health issues.
From problems with conception, carrying an unborn child to post birthing, the number of potential health issues become exponential. Existing and potential problems require a deep level of knowledge and practicing expertise. This can only be found with medical professionals that have focused their skills in this specific area.
Thailand’s dedicated health centers treat conception, pregnancy, and birthing issues with a level of understanding, care and respect equal to that of anywhere across the world. Many of these women’s health centers are now accredited by UNICEF as being designated Baby-Friendly Hospitals.
Fertility treatments have evolved from being based upon old wives’ tales and superstition into an advanced, scientifically based area of modern medicine, one at which Thailand’s medical facilities excel. It is the advanced treatments and highly skilled applications that have made Thailand the most visited country in the world for foreign visitors wishing to explore fertility treatments.
The level of unequaled care doesn’t stop with fertility and conception. Thailand’s women’s health centers continue at the apex of care quality throughout a women’s pregnancy, through to, and after, birthing. During this most important part of a woman’s life every existing and potential health issue is addressed with the same exemplary level of care.
The specialist medical teams build a relationship with potential mothers, from fertility treatment, including IVF, through carrying a child to birthing and beyond. This relationship is a journey, both a physical and a mental one. The success of this journey is not only reliant on the very best medical skills, but also on the trust and respect built between the teams of professionals and each and every expectant mother.
Following the birth of a child, there is a whole host of health issues that mother and baby may face. The dedicated women’s health centers will monitor babies closely, identify any potential health issues and treat them accordingly. The first 6 weeks after birthing, referred to as the postpartum period, is a vulnerable time for a mother who can then face new medical issues. Also, a delayed post-partum period of up to 6 months after birthing is not uncommon.
The bonding between mother and baby immediately after birthing is vital to them both. It is not uncommon for mothers to experience mental health issues at this time. Many new mothers experience an empty feeling following the birth, and in extreme cases, there can be a rejection of the newborn by the mother.
It is essential that these mental health issues are recognized early and addressed accordingly. Women’s health centers have specialist professionals trained in identifying the signals of post-partum mental health issues. These are key members of the specialist teams and are highly skilled in the alleviation and treatment of these problems.
Post-partum health problems are not only psychological, but they can also be physical, and in extreme cases life-threatening, and existing medical conditions can be exasperated by birthing. Infections, blood clots and hemorrhaging do happen and must be treated promptly and skillfully to ensure that the mother remains strong and healthy.
Cardiovascular problems can occur, but thankfully are less common. These can come about due to a viral infection or abnormalities in the immune system. They can also be down to genetics or damage to arteries in the heart. Skilled medical practitioners can identify these threats and treat mothers accordingly.
Women’s Overall Health Issues
The uniqueness of women’s health is not confined to reproduction. Some cancers are unique to women, ovarian and cervical cancers perhaps being the most common. Turner syndrome, a disorder whereby there is a missing, or partially missing, X chromosome is also unique to women. Typically, treatment for Turner syndrome would include growth hormone therapy and estrogen therapy.
Rett syndrome is also a female-only condition which, it should be stressed, is very rare. The condition is a genetically neurological developmental disorder. It affects the development of the brain and results in a loss of motor skills and the ability of speech. Treatment for Rett syndrome is symptomatic and it is very likely to shorten life expectancy.
There are also unique conditions affecting women’s urinary tract, the kidneys, bladder, ureters, and urethra, all of which require the knowledge and skills of practitioners specializing in the female form. Only at a dedicated women’s health center can a patient be sure of accessing these unique skills.
Thailand is now blessed with many of these dedicated women’s health centers, such as those operated by the Samitivej Hospital group of medical establishments. Every year thousands of more women are being treated at these centers, both indigenous Thais and foreign visitors to the kingdom from across the globe. The attraction? The exemplary level of skill and care offered to all in the Land of Smiles.