Monday 17th January 2022 marks the start of Cervical Cancer Prevention Week for 2022. This January we have decided to support Jo's Cervical Cancer Trust by sharing posts, helping raise awareness and donating 10% of all sales that this week to the trust.
Like all cancers, cervical cancer can effect any one of us either personally or through family and friends. According to cancerresearchuk.org website 3,197 cases per year (based on 2016 - 2018 figures) with a 51% survival rate (2013-2017). 99.8% of cases are preventable (2015).
Cervical Cancer can be prevented by early detection of the HPV virus, which can be found during your routine smear test. We all know smear test aren't our favourite thing to do and can sometimes be embarrassing - but trust me, it is so worth it!! The nurses don't care what you look like, what knickers you have on, whether you are waxed, shaved, natural, dyed or sparkly, all they care about is that you turn up and have the procedure. Jo's Cervical Cancer Trust website has some great tips to help you when you attend your smear.
Having a smear test only detects the HPV virus, it does not detect cervical cancer, so don't be fooled by thinking an all clear smear test gives you the free pass until the next one. Make yourself familiar with the signs and symptoms of cervical cancer and if anything doesn't feel right, get it checked. We all know the GP's are hard to get hold of, and under increasing pressure since the beginning of Covid-19, but please don't let them put you off. If you are concerned it could be serious tell them, don't be afraid to tell them you are scared. If you don't feel comfortable discussing the full details with the receptionist, explain this and ask for a call back from the GP, but whatever you do DON'T IGNORE it!!
I have had family members where they have found HPV Virus during their routine screening and luckily it was treated quickly and ended positively but I was taken aback to find that at 31/32 years old a school friend had died in 2021, following her battle with Cervical Cancer. This was devastating to hear and really hit home about the risks of cervical cancer and how important it is to listen to your body and attend regular screening.
Since 2008 the NHS has offered the HPV Vaccine in schools. The vaccine can help prevent some types of HPV. More information about the HPV Vaccine can be found here.
Now, I know this post isn't what you would expect to find on a Flapjack website, but we are committed to help raise awareness about charities and causes. Throughout the year we will be helping a different charity or cause, helping raise awareness, funds and sharing our stories.
Please visit www.jostrust.org.uk/ for lots of information, facts, advice and support!
What's your story? Share it with us or if you want to share anonymously message us, in complete confidence, and we will share it for you on your behalf.
*Please note the above information is from my own research and not the words of any of the websites mentioned. To get the best, most accurate advice and information please visit the websites or talk to you GP.