Be yourself at Planned Parenthood.
A safe place for all patients, our licensed medical professionals give you the respect and support you deserve while providing quality health care.
Following the Informed Consent model, Planned Parenthood is proud to empower our transgender patients to be their healthiest and happiest selves.
Hormone services are available to transgender people ages 18 and older. We offer these services at our Saratoga Springs health center located at 236 Washington Street, and our Glens Falls health center (opening June 2017 at 543 Bay Road.) HRT services will also soon be available at our Utica health center.
Looking to begin or continue hormone therapy?
Call 518.584.0041 to schedule an appointment. Patients can usually be seen within a week for hormone therapy and monitoring.
Get quality care at Planned Parenthood Mohawk Hudson.
- Birth control and emergency contraception
- Testing: STI, HIV, pregnancy
- Yearly exam including cancer screening
- Abortion care
- Support services for sexual violence victims
We'll work with you to make your healthcare as affordable as possible.
- Most insurance plans and Medicaid accepted
- Cash/check, credit/debit cards accepted
- Payment plans & sliding fee scale for many services
Many patients also qualify for the Family Planning Benefit Program.
This free program covers birth control, yearly exams, STI testing and other services — at no cost.
How is a transgender identity different from sexual orientation?
People often confuse gender identity with sexual orientation. But being transgender isn't the same thing as being lesbian, gay, or bisexual. Gender identity, whether transgender or cisgender, is about who you ARE inside as male, female, both, or none of these. Being lesbian, gay, bisexual, or straight describes who you're attracted to and who you feel yourself drawn to romantically, emotionally, and sexually.
A transgender person can be gay, lesbian, straight, or bisexual, just like someone who's cisgender. A simple way to think about it is: Sexual orientation is about who you want to be with. Gender identity is about who you are.
What’s gender dysphoria?
Gender dysphoria is a term that psychologists and doctors use to describe the distress, unhappiness, and anxiety that transgender people may feel about the mismatch between their bodies and their gender identity. A person may be formally diagnosed with gender dysphoria in order to receive medical treatment to help them transition.
Psychologists used to call this "gender identity disorder." However, the mismatch between a person's body and gender identity isn't in itself a mental illness (but it can cause emotional distress), so the term was changed to reflect that.
What health care do I need as a trans person?
Transgender people have the same health care needs as cisgender people, such as basic physical exams, preventive care, and STD testing. But you may also have special health care concerns and needs. If you wish to transition medically by using hormones or having surgery, expert care is needed to avoid problems.
Accessing health care can be challenging for transgender people. Not all nurses and doctors are sensitive to trans issues or informed about the health care needs of transgender people. You may worry about revealing your gender identity regardless of whether you wish to transition medically. You might not feel comfortable with your body or feel comfortable having a nurse or doctor examine you.
Transgender people who want to transition medically should look for qualified nurses and doctors who can provide the best treatments and care. Unfortunately, these treatments are not easy to access for many people who want them — they can be expensive and are often not covered by insurance. You may need a parent or legal guardian's permission if you're under 18. Sometimes finding a provider who offers these treatments can be difficult depending on where you live.
Because finding doctors who will help you safely through medical transition can be difficult, some people use hormones that they obtain from other sources. Using hormones without medical guidance is dangerous — it can increase your risk for blood clots, high blood pressure, liver disease, and other serious complications. If you use needles to give yourself injections without learning how to do it safely from a nurse or doctor, you could increase your risk for HIV, hepatitis, and other infections.
Transgender people who want to feminize their bodies and can't access surgeries may get people who aren't nurses or doctors to inject "street" silicone into their bodies. Street silicone might give your body feminine curves, but it's extremely dangerous and can lead to infections or even death. Some people who use street silicone eventually need to have it removed from their bodies by a doctor.
Where can I find support?
You can find support in a lot of places, including:
- Other transgender people who may share their experience of coming out or transitioning
- Online communities of trans folks
- Transgender support groups at your local LGBTQ community center
- Cisgender people who are allies to trans people
- National organizations such as the National Center for Transgender Equality (http://transequality.org), the Human Rights Campaign (HRC), The Trevor Project, PFLAG and GLAAD.
Not everyone lives in a place that has lots of trans people or an LGBTQ community center. If this is your situation, check the Internet for communities and support.
What does passing mean?
Passing describes the experience of a transgender person being seen by others as the gender they want to be seen as. An example would be a trans woman using the women's bathroom and being seen as female by those around her.
Passing is extremely important for many transgender people. Passing can be emotionally important because it affirms your gender identity. Passing can also provide safety from harassment and violence. Because of transphobia, a transgender person who passes may experience an easier time moving through the world than a person who is known to be transgender or looks more androgynous.
But not all transgender people feel the same way about passing. While passing is important to some people, others feel the word suggests that some people's gender presentation isn't as real as others. They may feel that passing implies that being seen by others as cisgender is more important than being known as transgender. Some transgender people are comfortable with and proud to be out as trans and don't feel the need to pass as a cisgender person.
What does it mean to transition?
Transgender people have a range of experiences with transitioning. Some may transition socially, legally, and medically, some may transition only socially, and some may not do any of these.
Transitioning is the process of changing the way you look and how people see and treat you so that you become the gender you feel on the inside. Transitioning can means lots of different things. It can involve medical treatment and hormones. It can involve changing your name and preferred pronouns. It can involve changing your appearance and dress. It can involve coming out to your friends and family. It can be a long and ongoing process. Or it can be something that happens over a short period of time.
How do people transition?
There are two different types of transition, or ways to affirm your gender: social transition and medical transition.
Social transitioning may include:
- coming out to your friends and family as transgender
- asking people to use pronouns (she/her, he/him, they/them) that match your gender identity
- going by a different name
- dressing/grooming in ways that match your gender identity
For trans men, or FTM, medical transition may include any of the following:
- hormone therapy (to create masculine characteristics such as a deeper voice, facial hair growth, muscle growth, redistribution of body fat away from hips and breasts, not getting a period, etc.)
- male chest reconstruction, or "top surgery" (removal of breasts and breast tissue)
- hysterectomy (removal of internal female reproductive organs such as the ovaries and uterus)
- phalloplasty (construction of a penis using skin from other parts of your body)
- metoidioplasty (surgery that causes your clitoris to work more like a penis, along with hormone treatment to make your clitoris grow larger)
For trans women, or MTF, medical transition may include any of the following:
- hormone therapy (to create feminine characteristics such as less body hair, breasts, redistribution of body fat toward hips and breasts, etc.)
- breast augmentation (implants)
- orchiectomy (removal of testes)
- laser hair removal (to remove hair from your face or other parts of your body)
- tracheal shave (making your Adam's apple smaller)
- facial feminization surgery (create smaller, more feminine facial features)
- penile inversion vaginoplasty (creation of a vagina by inverting penile skin)
Does everyone who is transgender decide to transition?
No, not all transgender people transition. For those who do, not all transition in the same way. Some may transition socially and not medically. Some may transition medically by doing one or only a few of the procedures listed above. Some may take hormones and decide not to have any surgeries, or just choose one kind of surgery and none of the others.
There are many reasons for the differences in how people transition. These medical procedures can be very expensive, which means that not everyone can afford them. Some transgender people may have health insurance that covers transition-related procedures, and some may not. And finally, but most importantly — not all trans people want all of the available medical procedures.
Regardless of whether a transgender person chooses to transition and how they choose to do it, they're no more "real" than other trans people who don't transition. Someone's gender identity should always be respected no matter how they decide to transition socially or medically.
How can I support someone who is trans?
Support is important. Transgender people are more visible in the media and in our society than ever before. Transgender communities are fighting for equal rights. While great progress has been made, there's still a lot of work to do to make sure everyone feels safe expressing their true gender identity and are given the same rights as cisgender people.
Far too many transgender people are negatively affected by transphobia. Transphobia can result in violence and even murder. It can also result in depression, substance abuse, self-harm, and suicide. A 2011 survey conducted by the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force and National Center for Transgender Equality showed that 41% of trans people had attempted suicide, as compared to 1.6% of the general population.
It's important that everyone — cisgender and transgender — work together to create communities that are welcoming to trans and gender nonconforming people. Everyone deserves to live in a world free of violence and discrimination, including those whose gender identity and expression doesn't match their assigned sex. Everyone can play a part in supporting transgender people and making communities safer and more inclusive.
What do I call people who are transgender?
Respect the words a person uses to describe themselves. Transgender and gender nonconforming people use many different terms to describe their experiences and not all terms fit all people. Some trans people may use terms that others are uncomfortable with. It's important to ask people what language they want you to use. It's okay to ask someone for their preferred name and pronouns. Always use the name and pronouns they choose.
If a trans person isn't sure which identity label fits them best, give them the time to figure it out for themselves. The terms or language a person prefers may change over time, and that's totally normal and okay.