When you’re planning on getting married, it’s important to understand that your future decisions will now be taken for two. This requires you to take your partner’s health seriously. However, the reality is often different because the euphoria of starting a new life can make people head straight to the alter without considering some sexual and reproductive health factors. Here are 5 major medical tests you should have before marriage.
1. HIV and STDs
First on the list of our medical tests because we expect things to get ‘steamy’. You should check for the possibility of lifelong infections such as HIV, Hepatitis B and C and Herpes. Also check for curable ones like gonorrhoea, syphilis, bacterial vaginosis, yeast infections, Chlamydia, etc. Statistics show that 50% of young people will get an STI and not know it.
If everything checks out, that’s great. If not, it’s okay. The knowledge of your partner’s status will help you take the right measures to protect yourself should you decide to go ahead. Having prior knowledge and taking the appropriate steps as directed by your doctor will also reduce the risk of infertility or miscarriages.
2. Fertility Test
We love kids and having ‘Junior’ is always on the cards when considering marriage. It’s important to consider doing fertility tests to avoid surprises and some of the emotional stress associated with it. Test for both you and your partner because men are liable for up to half of all infertility cases. Fertility tests include seminal analysis, hormonal assay; pelvic ultrasound scans to ascertain the state of the internal reproductive organs.
It’s important to ascertain both your genotypes beforehand to avoid having a child with sickle cell disease. Sickle Cell disease is associated with a defect in the red blood cells – often resulting in serious illness. If you’re of the AA genotype, there’s nothing to worry about but if you are AS, you are a carrier of the sickle cell gene and care must be taken to know if your partner isn’t AS too. If they are, there is a 50% chance of having a child that is of the SS genotype.
4. Blood Group
It’s important to ascertain the blood group of a potential spouse to avoid issues relating to blood group or rhesus incompatibility. Your blood group can either be A, B, O or AB but there’s another component referred to as the Rhesus factor. The Rhesus factor is either positive or negative. If a Rhesus negative woman marries a Rhesus Positive husband, there is a 50% chance the baby will be rhesus positive. In this case, if precautions are not taken during pregnancy, this could lead to haemolytic disease in the newborn.
An understanding of both your blood groups will help your doctor prevent Rhesus incompatibility issues during pregnancy.
5. Chronic Medical Conditions
Having a chronic medical condition isn’t the end of the world. Knowledge will only help both of you be better prepared to look out for each other. Early testing for conditions like diabetes, high blood pressure, kidney disease, etc., will enable couples to seek medical assistance early enough and also make the necessary lifestyle changes. When it comes to your health, it is always good to know as this sets you on a path to making healthy life choices.
It’s better to be on the safe side when it comes to knowing your sexual health status. This is why we think you should do these 5 medical tests before marriage. Being aware of any issues or the lack of them leaves you with one less thing to worry about before your big day.
To help you prepare better you can also check our couple’s plan. This has been carefully designed to take care of you and your partner, ensuring you get just the right kind of healthcare for two.
Check here to enrol today.