Introduction To Cervical Health
Supporting cervical health should be a key aspect of every adult woman’s medical regimen. Although cervical cancer is treatable if you catch it early, it could be missed if you fail to get regular screenings. For this reason, the medical community makes attempts to provide information to ensure that women are supporting their cervical wellness.
One of these attempts is the designation of January as Cervical Health Awareness Month. It includes lectures and community events that provide women with the information they need to keep the cervix healthy and prevent cancer.
Overview Of Cervical Health Awareness Month
In 99% of cases, contraction of the disease is linked to infection with HPV (Human Papillomaviruses) that you acquire through sexual contact.
As cervical cancer is preventable and treatable if caught early, this month is dedicated to providing information about the disease and what women can do to lower their risk.
This includes regular screenings in the form of a PAP smear, getting an HPV vaccination, eating cervical health foods, and being aware of certain symptoms.
The primary goals of Cervical Health Awareness Month are early detection and prevention. Besides attending talks, you can also get involved on a deeper level by disseminating information on social media, participating in community events, and advocating for more educational and medical funding.
All About The Cervix
The cervix is the tissue that connects the vagina and the uterus, and it plays a key role in the female reproductive system and childbirth. It allows the menstrual blood to flow out of the vagina, and it’s also important in the production of mucus.
The mucus protects cervical health, and it’s also the doorway for the sperm to enter the female body. In addition, it assists in successful fertilization by helping the sperm in finding eggs for conception.
During pregnancy, the cervix remains closed until labor, at which point it gradually begins to dilate until it’s big enough for the baby to fit through the opening. A review in Clinical Obstetrics and Gynecology explored the anatomy and physiology of the uterine cervix.
When you’re not pregnant, the cervix plays a protective role by preventing toxins and other elements from entering your reproductive system and causing harm. Fortunately, there are numerous tips for healthy cervix that can greatly lower the risk of health issues like cancer.
How To Boost Your Cervical Health?
Get ready for Cervical Health Awareness Month by becoming familiar with the best tips to support cervical health.
See your gynecologist on a regular basis and get PAP screenings. This will pick up any abnormal cells that could turn into cervical cancer and lead to early prevention. In addition, a PAP can detect the presence of the HPV virus that can lead to cervical cancer. You can also get HPV primary testing to see if you have the virus.
2. Get the HPV Vaccination
The HPV vaccine is one of the most important tips for a healthy cervix, as it prevents you from developing any of the HPV strain infections that can put you at risk for cervical cancer.
In the U.S, these vaccines are approved for women between the ages of 9 through 45 to protect the women from cervical and other cancers.
3. Follow Your Doctor’s Recommendations
When it comes to cervical health, it’s important to follow any testing or other recommendations given to you by your physician.
Patients very commonly don’t follow through with the doctor’s advice, and the result is often that problems are not caught early enough for successful treatment. It’s crucial to be organized in your medical care.
4. Practice Safe Sex
Prevention of HPV and other sexually transmitted diseases is key in lowering the risk of cervical cancer.
Practice safety by using condoms every time you have sex, but also keep in mind that you can get HPV from skin-to skin-contact, and penetration is not necessarily required.
5. Know the Symptoms and Report Them
There are key symptoms that could indicate cervical cancer, including heavier menstrual periods, spotting, blood after intercourse, pain during sex, unusual vaginal discharge, and bleeding after menopause, among others . If you notice one or more of these symptoms, report them to your doctor immediately.
6. Decrease Your Stress Levels
Lowering stress levels supports a stronger immune system that can decrease the risk of getting cancer. It can also lead to a better prognosis. According to Oncology Times, studies show a link between stress and a higher risk of mortality from cervical cancer.
7. Quit Smoking
Smoking can have a devastating impact on cervical health, increasing the risk of developing cancer as well as other related complications.
According to research, tobacco byproducts can damage the DNA of the cervical cells that may lead to cancer. In addition, smoking generally weakens the immune system, making it less likely that you will successfully fight HPV infections.
8. Follow a Healthy Diet
One of the best tips for healthy cervix is to follow a nutritious diet rich in vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants that help boost the immune system. This allows for better general health and increased ability to fight HPV and related infections. In addition, foods with folate specifically support fertility and reproductive organs.
Nutrition To Enhance The Cervix
Evidence indicates that there are certain foods that can enhance the health of the cervix. Consider adding some of these nutritious cervical health foods to your diet to lower your risk of developing cancer. A study in Nutrition and Cancer concluded that the consumption of plant-based nutrients can reduce the risk of cervical cancer.
- Papaya – This fruit is high in cryptoxanthin, beta-carotene, and lycopene that help heal HPV and produce Vitamin A, which is high in healing and immune-boosting antioxidants.
- Broccoli – This vegetable is high in B vitamins like folate that support general reproductive wellness and cervical health. They also strengthen the immune system.
- Pink Grapefruit – These contain lycopene that can be a helpful treatment for people who have an HPV infection and are at risk for developing cervical cancer.
- Spinach – Spinach is one of the best cervical health foods because it’s high in folate, as well as antioxidant-rich vitamins like C and A that can heal the body and boost the immune system.
- Winter Squash – It’s high in beta-carotene that becomes vitamin A in the body, boosting the immune system, promoting healing, and lowering the risk of developing cervical cancer.
- Tomatoes – Tomatoes support cervical health because they are high in lycopene, which can help treat HPV and decrease the risk of contracting cervical cancer.
- Bell Peppers – These are cervical health foods that are very high in the antioxidant Vitamin C, which strengthens the immune system and helps to heal the HPV infection.
The Bottom Line
The goal of Cervical Health Awareness Month is to promote cervical wellness for all women and provide information about how best to do that. It’s pivotal to be knowledgeable about the risks of developing cervical cancer, of which the primary one is HPV infection.
Testing for HPV is essential, as is getting the preventative vaccination and practicing safe sex to avoid transmission. In addition, you must get regular gynecological checkups and PAP tests for early detection of cervical cancer and follow through with any recommendations from your physician.
Women should be aware of the symptoms that could indicate cervical cancer and follow up on them as soon as possible. It’s also important to know that promotion of your general health can also help boost cervical health.
In support of women’s health as well as cervical wellness, we highly recommend that you get involved in some of the events this month. Take the opportunity to learn as much as you can about the cervix and HPV infection and cancer prevention. It’s an investment in your health and well-being.