Life is hectic. I get it. You have work, family, friends and maybe even kids and pets. And don’t even get me started on trying to get through the home ‘To-Do’ list. The linen cupboard will just have to stay messy for another year. The one thing I won’t skip a beat on is checking in with my GP. For me those check ins are a little more regular than they would be for others given my medical history. Luckily most people only need to go their GP once a year and apparently even that can be too hard.
Whether you’re swamped with family or work commitments it is important to put yourself first sometimes. At certain stages of your life there are important medical checks that need to be done and one of the most important ones for women is (the sometimes dreaded) Pap Smear. It needs to be done every two years once you become sexually active right up until you’re 69 and it is probably one of the most avoided tests by women.
So many say that they’re awkward. AWKWARD! When I was being treated for Cervical Cancer I had to allow so many Doctors, Specialists, Surgeons and Nurses to look down there. I have never been so well kept in my life. The other argument is that they are painful, which is subjective but a Pap shouldn’t be painful. It only takes a couple of minutes and you’ll usually have your results within a week.
Even though a Pap Smear is a quick and easy process, I have had family and friends tell me that they’ve not just missed theirs but avoided it. I’ve even had a Mum tell me and it blew my mind. How could someone who had a gorgeous partner and children at home not look after their health? Cervical Cancer is one of the most preventable cancers and yet so many women can’t be bothered to have their regular Pap.
It doesn’t matter how big or small your family is, whether you’re a parent or not, you are still surrounded by people who would be shattered if you weren’t here with them and that is who you need to do you Pap for. So, who is it that you need to have yours for? For me it is my amazing Husband Rav.
I have a Pap every year for my own peace of mind and due to my history but one year I went two months over. Rav nearly drove me to my GP straight away. I let life get in the way and I lost track. There was one point in my life I was having them monthly and yet I still lost track of time for a yearly test.
Don’t be me and definitely don’t be the person who brags that they haven’t been to the Doctor in years. It’s not healthy and no one likes a bragger anyway. There are wonderful reminder services such as the Australian Cervical Cancer Foundation’s app as well as their initiative “Get The Pap Text”, which are both free and can help ensure you stay on top of your Pap tests. Make a promise to a loved one that you won’t lose track of your next Pap and sign up now to make sure you’re up to date.
Cervical Cancer Awareness Week is 7th – 13th November 2016. Head to www.accf.org.au for more info and to download their new app