Tracking Your Reproductive Health Just Got Easier
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One of the newest iPhone features standard with the latest operating system, iOS 9, is the Reproductive Health feature in the Health app, where users can now track things like sexual activity and menstruation.
Third party period-tracking apps were popular in the past, but with the iPhone’s new ability they may just remain there. Apple has increased its focus on overall health with the addition of the Apple Watch, which has fitness tracking capabilities and the Health app, which originally tracked fitness, vitals, food intake and more. Now, Apple has increased the umbrella of health to also include reproductive health.
The new Reproductive Health app features can be pretty specific depending upon what your needs are.
When adding a sexual activity data point, you can choose the date and time and whether you used protection or no protection.
For the menstruation data points, you can specify when your cycle started, the date, the time and how heavy the flow is.
If you open the Health app in iOS 9, Reproductive Health should be listed sixth on the options list. From there, you will have the ability to track multiple reproductive health concerns.
The app is highly geared toward women, also having the ability to track basal body temperature, spotting and ovulation test results, along with menstruation.
Since the app is stored locally on your phone, it is easier to get to, does not take up extra gigabytes like a similar third-party app and it is relatively simple to use.
You can even see your data points in graph form over the period of a day, a week, a month and a year. You can add the graphs to the dashboard, which allows you to see all of your reproductive health data as soon as you open your Health app.
The app keeps all your data personal, but you can also opt to share it with other apps.
There are some parts of the feature that are not as perfect as they could be. For example, there is not an option to track when a cycle ends in the menstruation tracker, you can only track when it begins. When you add a data point in the menstruation tracker, it only lets you put a data point as Start of Cycle and you can answer yes or no. This makes this small part of the feature a little difficult to use, as it is important to know when a cycle begins and ends for some people. Instead, you would have to add two data points and answer no for the one that represents the end of the cycle.
But overall, Apple has yet again given users another way to track their health, except this time in even broader terms with the Reproductive Health feature. And although it is geared mostly toward women’s reproductive health, both men and women may find it useful in tracking their health in their everyday lives.
Amanda Gibson can be contacted at [email protected].