The start of the 2018 brings new beginnings and heightened ambition to achieve lofty goals. Nurses are the first to make the health of others a priority, but that doesn’t mean your own health should be overlooked.
January is Cervical Health Awareness Month, bringing heightened awareness as to how you can protect yourself and possibly prevent this common cancer. Below are a few tips to help ensure you lead a healthy and happy 2018.
According to the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, cervical cancer occurs on a woman’s cervix and includes a host of symptoms, many of which do not become noticeable until the cancer is already at an advanced stage. The U.S. Department of Health & Human Services advocate for early prevention through regular women’s wellness exams, which include testing for cervical cytology, also called a Pap test. This test looks for pre-cancerous and cancerous cells in the cervix.
HHS.Gov also recommends an HPV test, which tests for the sexually transmitted infection that causes most types of cervical cancer. According to HSS.Gov, there are about 40 types of HPV strains that can infect the genital area and about a dozen of these strains can cause cervical cancer. For more information on low-risk and high-risk HPV strains, visit the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services.
The American Cancer Society recommends all women begin early screening for cervical cancer beginning at the age of 21 and recommends women aged 21-29 have a Pap test every three years. The American Cancer Society also states that if found early, cervical cancer is one of the most successfully treatable cancers.
Make 2018 your year to experience optimum health and vitality in your own life as you continue to provide high-quality patient care.
Sources: https://www.hhs.gov/opa/reproductive-health/cancers/cervical-cancer/index.html, https://www.cancer.org/cancer/cervical-cancer/prevention-and-early-detection/cervical-cancer-screening-guidelines.html, https://www.cancer.org/latest-news/special-coverage/cervical-health-awareness-month.html