LGBTQ Health Considerations

Behavioral and Physical Health

LGBTQ people often experience prejudice, stereotyping and harassment or bullying by others. This kind of discrimination can be very stressful, which can put you at risk for depression, anxiety, substance abuse, feelings of loneliness and even suicide.

Being open not only about your sexual orientation and gender identity, but also about any substance abuse or mental health needs, allows your provider to give you the best possible care.

Exercise and healthy eating are important components of wellness for everyone. Physical health plays an important role in feeling emotionally healthy, too!

Research has shown that LGBTQ people are more likely to smoke, lesbians are at higher risk for obesity, and some gay men struggle with poor body image.

If you discuss these issues with your healthcare providers, they can advise you on healthy diets and self-image, smoking cessation and exercise routines.

Lesbians, bisexual women and some transgender people should also make sure they are getting routine gynecologic screenings, including Pap smears and routine breast cancer screening.