A study of 2,017 women by the Jo’s Cervical Cancer Trust Charity has shown a third of the women either delayed or missed going to their cervical cancer/smear test because they were embarrassed about their body shapes and having someone that intimately close with them.
15% of the study group also said they would skip their appointment in favour of going to gym classes or for a wax. Nationally, it has been found that one in every four women miss their cervical screening appointments.
So what exactly have some of these women been avoiding?
A cervical screening test is offered to 25-65 year olds and takes a small swab from the cervix so the cells can be detected for abnormalities. The NHS page for cervical screening states that around 1 in 20 results come back as abnormal, but do not worry! A lot of these abnormal results are not cancerous and will often go back to normal.
Despite it being a little embarrassing or uncomfortable, surely making sure your body is healthy is worth it? It should only take a couple of minutes, and is done every 3 years for 25-49 year olds and every 5 years for 50-64 years old. To me the choice is simple, 5 minutes every few years in return for piece of mind that your cervix is healthy.
When you turn 25 you will receive a letter from your GP asking you to make an appointment. If you’re one of the women that have missed your appointments so far then it’s never too late – ring up your GP and ask to book one.
Below is the NHS webpage for cervical screenings if you would like more information, as well as a link to a video that well explains how the procedure works.
NHS webpage: https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/cervical-screening/
How is a cervical cancer test done? Video: https://mobile.twitter.com/VictoriaLIVE/status/ 955373357700018177
By Hollie Luck
30 January 2018
Disclaimer: The information in this article is from the NHS website, and does not constitute professional, medical or psychological advice. Always seek the advice of a qualified health provider with any questions, or if any of the issues in this article affect you
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