By Alexandra Bazuaye
Trust me the sound of cancer is frightening, and one of my most dreadful topics. For me it is all morbid, and definitely not entertained on my conversation list. But the truth is that we need to be aware and well-informed in order to protect ourselves, as well as prolong our lives.
It is widely accepted that there is no cure for cancers generally and cervical cancer is not off the list. Cervical cancer is the scariest medical condition a woman can face. Silent but deadly, it is a slow growing disease that rarely shows symptoms in its early stages. While research is yet to ascertain the cause of cervical cancer, statistics show that certain things increase the risk of cervical cancer.
So if you want to safeguard your health, here are 6 basic steps to kiss cervical cancer goodbye.
- Pap smear: The most common form of cervical cancer comes with pre-cancerous changes that is why your pap smear is important. This involves taking a sample of your cervical cell for testing. This screening helps detect changes in the cervix, and if treated in good time can stop cervical cancer before its effects begin to surface. Women from the age of 21 should endeavor to get a pap test done every 3 years till at least the age of 65.
- HPV vaccination: If you are within the age bracket of 9 to 26, you may want to consider getting your HPV vaccination. Types 16 and 18 Human Papillomavirus (HPV) cause more than half of all cervical cancers. This vaccination which is given in shots helps lowers the risk of cancer. Note that it is not important to get the HPV testing before getting the vaccination.
- Give up cigarette: Cigarette smoking has been proven to cause different types of cancers. Smokers are twice as likely to get cervical cancer, so ditch that cigarette.
- Maintain a healthy diet: Cervical cancer cannot be prevented with diet alone, but certain foods have been shown to decrease an individual’s risk of developing cervical cancer. Vegetables like cauliflower, broccoli, and other relatives can aid in the restoration of the cells infected with HPV. Make sure you are getting enough fruits, vegetables, beans, and whole grains each day.
- Practice safe sex: Prevention is always the best, but if you engage in sexual activities ensure you use a condom. You should also note that research suggests that women with multiple sexual partners are more prone to the risks posed by cervical cancer.
- Learn more: The best way to prevent cervical cancer is to constantly update yourself with information concerning causes and prevention against this malignant infection.
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