8 important cervical cancer facts all empowered women should know

Love your body, love yourself. Here are eight important things you should know about cervical cancer and how you can prevent it!

As women, we have come a long way and even though we may still be fighting for our voices to be heard, it's important for us to remember to take care of ourselves before we want to take over the world.

Cervical cancer is more common than you think, so here are some important points you should know:

 

cervical cancer

1. Knowledge is power

The National Cancer Centre of Singapore reports that cervical cancer is one of the top ten most common cancer amongst women in the country.

It used to be the second (after breast cancer), but because more women are getting screened and becoming aware about the importance of reproductive health, this number has drastically fallen.

 

cervical cancer

2. The best protection is early detection

Cervical cancer is the only cancer among gynaecological cancers to have a reliable screening tool -- the pap smear test.

You only have to go for a test once every three years -- which is longer than the duration of National Service duty our dear husbands had to endure.

Go on ladies, take one for the team!

 

cervical cancer

3. There is a cure

Despite being a common cancer, according to the Singapore Cancer Society (SCS) cervical cancer is one of the most preventable cancers and it is also curable if detected early.

So it's important that you practice self-care by watching your health and always remember to go for your scheduled pap smears!

 

cervical cancer

4. You are not slut

Most cases of cervical cancer are caused by Human Papillomavirus (HPV), a sexually-transmitted virus, and even condoms don’t necessarily protect against HPV entirely.

But whether you have a history of random hook-ups, or you're in a committed relationship, you can still be at risk of developing cervical cancer (so enough with the slut-shaming already).

 

cervical cancer

5. Don't wait, vaccinate!

Vaccines available in Singapore can help prevent up to nine strains of HPV which are responsible for almost 90% of cervical cancer cases.

Instead of going for manicures with your best friend, ask her to accompany you to get vaccinated instead (and then go get your nails done afterwards, because you sure deserve it!).

 

cervical cancer

6. Yes, all men

It is better for women to seek HPV vaccination earlier as by the age of 26, most people would have likely already been exposed to HPV infections.

Actually, it is also recommended for boys and men to get vaccinated, so tell your man to wipe that smug smile off his face.

 

cervical cancer

7. Kick the bad habits

Smoking could increase your risk of infections and developing cervical cancer -- not to mention that it costs a bomb and also causes premature ageing.

Save your hard-earned money and treat yourself to some avocado toast for brunch and get that cute new lip gloss instead, girl!

 

cervical cancer

8. Cancer sucks

The cervical cancer-causing HPV can also cause other forms of cancers, such as cancer of the:

  • Vulva
  • Vagina
  • Penis
  • Anus
  • Back of the throat
  • Base of the tongue
  • Tonsils

Your friends love you, your family loves you, your children love you, your spouse loves you, and most importantly you should love yourself.

So take charge of your own body and remember to get yourself vaccinated and tested to prevent cervical cancer!

 

Pap smears are available at all polyclinics, most hospitals and private clinics. FREE screening services are also  currently being offered by SCS (from 2nd May to 31st July). For more information, visit: www.singaporecancersociety.org.sg/events/campaigns/women-s-gynaecological-cancer-campaign.html