Today we are talking about something serious and relevant to everyone.
Last week, we were invited to a special bloggers engagement workshop by Power over Cervical Cancer (POCC for short) to spread knowledge and insight into cervical cancer particularly in the Singaporean context. Just about the most of the top female bloggers were there that night.
I was just recalling what one of the speakers, Karen Tan said about cancer (She’s the lovely lady in fuschia maxi dress on the far right). You can hear her stand on Cervical Cancer here. Cancer doesn’t discriminate, it doesn’t affect you based on your skin colour, how rich or poor you are or even how old you are. So if you think that cancer won’t affect you or your loved ones, think again.
Here are some hard facts about Cervical Cancer:
- Cervical cancer refers to cancer originating from the cervix, which is the lower part of the womb (uterus).
- It is the 6th most common cancer amongst women in Singapore.
- It’s caused by human papillomavirus (HPV).
- It can take anytime from 10-20 years to develop but before that, pre-cancer cells develop and CAN be detected by a Pap smear.
- Lifestyle habits like smoking can increase the possibility of you contracting cervical cancer up to 10 times!!!
- Cervical cancer can be treated if detected early.
You can find out more information about Cervical Cancer by visiting www.pocc.sg
Most people are embarrassed about going for Pap smears as it involves showing your girly bits to a gynecologist, and also Cervical cancer isn’t like STD, just because you’ve been with the same partner doesn’t mean you’re not at the risk of cervical cancer. It’s as simple as contracting a flu virus, the difference is, even when you are affected by HPV virus, you will feel fine. That is until 10-20 years later when it goes into full-blown cancer.
What can you do about it?
Singapore is supposed to be a well-developed metropolitan city with healthcare that is readily available. Pap smears are available at the local polyclinics and the procedure takes less than 10mins. Yet, it is amazing how a cancer that can be prevented still remains to be the top 6 cancer that affects women in Singapore. And prevention is as easy as a vaccination jab! Just like a vaccination that you may take for flu. Most doctors provide this a HPV vaccine that protects against certain strains of vaccine that causes Cervical Cancer.
Start with yourself, go for Pap smears every 1-3years and protect yourself with a Cervical Cancer vaccination. Consult your family doctor on getting vaccinated against Cervical Cancer or you may go to www.pocc.sg to check out a list of doctors that provide this.
Bring a female friend/family member along. Because they are important people in your life and you care about their well-being.
Remember to go for your Pap smears and I know there are non-Singaporeans out there, remember to go for your Pap smears and vaccinate!