Cervical cancer is the 4th most commonly occurring cancer in women and the 7th most common cancer overall. There were more than 604,000 new cases of cervical cancer in 2020.
Here are 6 ways you can reduce the risk of cervical cancer:
Get vaccinated: Human papilloma virus (HPV) vaccine – HPV infection is the leading cause of cervical, vulvar and vaginal cancer, so by having this vaccination you can reduce your risk of developing a gynaecological cancer.
Attend your appointments: Always attend your cervical smear test – a smear test takes just 10 minutes, but the benefits of it can last a life time.
Quit smoking: Smoking damages all of the organs in your body and can even put you at a higher risk of developing a gynaecological cancer. quitting smoking will reduce your risk significantly even if you have been smoking for a number of years.
Make healthy decisions: Maintaining a healthy weight, while also staying active and eating a balance diet can help to reduce your chances of developing gynaecological cancer along with other types of cancer.
Contact your doctor if you notice anything unusual: If you have notice anything new or abnormal, it is a good idea to see your gynaecologist or GP to make sure that it is not a warning sign of any cancer.
Know your family history: Around 5-10% of all gynaecological cancer cases are hereditary, meaning that it has been pasted down by a family remember. If you know that you have any gynaecological cancers in your family then you can look out any signs or symptoms.
Everyone should talk with their general practitioner about cervical cancer and decide on an appropriate screening schedule.
For people at high risk for developing cervical cancer, screening is recommended at an earlier age and more often than for people who have an average risk of cervical cancer.
Early-stage cervical cancer rarely has symptoms. You might not know anything is wrong until the cancer is more advanced. Then you could have irregular vaginal bleeding or discharge, or pain during sex. Fortunately, screening tests can detect cervical cancer, and the HPV virus that usually causes it, very early.
This article is intended to inform and give insight but not treat, diagnose or replace the advice of a doctor. Always seek medical advice with any questions regarding a medical condition.