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12 March 2019

Let's Talk Smear Tests

Let me ask you this, you're willing to go through the sheer pain of waxing your bikini line which, let's be honest, stings like a bitch, but you can't spare two minutes for a test that could potentially save your life? Hmm, let's get some waxed vag perspective here.




About two months ago, I had my first ever smear test. I won't lie to you, I'd been putting it off for God knows how long, I always came up with the same excuses "I'll be fine" or "It's too embarrassing, I don't want a nurse seeing my bits!"


Come on, admit it girls, you've all used one of these lame excuses one time or another. And yes, I did say lame, because it's true, they are feeble excuses.


However, when I had a diabetic review with the GP nurse, she noticed on my records that I hadn't booked myself in for a smear test (head down in shame moment) and I reluctantly agreed to book an appointment there and then with her to have it done in a few weeks time.


Test day finally arrived, as I walked into the germ-fest that is my doctor's surgery, I felt incredibly apprehensive and slightly embarrassed for two reasons:


1) I didn't want to show my vagina to someone who barely knew me!
2) I knew I should have made the appointment sooner.

Let me take you through my test for those who haven't had it done before.
I went into the examination room, sit down and I get asked if I'm pregnant (FYI to you readers - no I'm not!) she then tells me to go behind the curtain and strip from the waist down (obvs) and cover my lower end with a paper towel. So you can kind of relax at this point, your modesty is covered. 

 
Then it's ankles together, knees apart.
 
 
The nurse will use a speculum to open up your cervix (it's not as bad as it sounds) then she will take a sample from there using a small brush. Then voila - it's done. The nurse will remove the speculum from your vagina. It was now time to put my knees back together and put my underwear back on. I leave there feeling proud that I have ignored all the horror stories that I heard from others. The screening was just 2-3 minutes out of my day, that's barely 1%.
 
 
One way I could describe the smear test is uncomfortable. It is an uneasy feeling having a medical instrument shoved up your vagina. It can be more uncomfortable for others, which is ok, the nurse will be reassuring (like mine was) and will stop if you feel it's getting too much, something I almost did but I persevered.
 
 
So do one thing today girls, get your GP receptionist on the phone and book yourself in for a test, give yourself that peace of mind like I did. And please - do not listen to the horror stories that get spread around about smear tests, it's better to have that peace of mind than have a mind filled with regret. Also think of it this way, the nurse who is doing your smear has seen dozens of vagina's (I've used this word too many times now) before now doing other smear tests, this is nothing out of the ordinary for them and please don't use the embarrassment excuse to not book a cervical screening - JUST DO IT!



Do the #SmearForSmear selfie to raise awareness of why it's important for women to have the test done.



If you would like to know more information about cervical screenings and/or you have any worries or concerns, or even if you're trying to justify to yourself why you should have it done, follow this link for more info:
 
 
 
 
If you have experienced the smear test, please give any tips for anybody struggling to make their appointment or are scared of going to their test, you may be able to help someone.
 
 
Lucy


10 comments:

  1. I need to make my appointment. I keep getting anxious about it but the more I delay, the worst the anxiety gets.

    xoxo
    Jess
    The Crown Wings | UK Travel & Lifestyle Blog

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I felt exactly the same as you Jess, but I just bit the bullet and booked it! It’s worth the peace of mind xx

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  2. I had my 1st smear two years ago now and it was truly horrible for me. BUT that being said I will go again because I'm very anxious about my floof (vagina) health and I want her to be well.
    Point is that no matter how busy I am, how awful it was etc I will go again. I will go every damn time because that 5 minutes of pain is better than not knowing.
    Thank you for posting this. I will be sharing this as I've often wanted to write something similar but never had the right words.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It isn’t a nice experience, but like you said, it’s so worth having it done!

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  3. I had to read this article to find out what a smear test was! Just a difference in words, in the US we call it a pap smear. I've performed many a pap smear during my training and always try to be reassuring. It can be embarrassing but just like anything else, it becomes "old hat" as you get older and have had too many to remember.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ah I didn’t know it was called a Pap smear in the US!

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  4. I remember being scared and embarrassed the first time I had my annual check up + smear! I wasn't sure if I would feel pain or not but it's as you said, it was painless and quick!! I'm just not sure how often it just be done so I'll have to double check again with them. ThanksThan sharing Lucy! X

    Geraldine | https://geraldinetalks.com

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  5. Great post and super important. I will be invited to have mine soon, they definitely should lower the age for it but I know when it comes to it for me I will probably be terrified and embarrassed about it but I know it doesn't take long and it's definitely important to have it! Thank you for sharing your experience, definitely makes me feel less anxious for when mine comes along.

    Chloe xx

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    Replies
    1. I really think they should lower the age of cervical screenings too Chloe, I felt scared and embarrassed about the test, but it's so quick and it's so good to have that peace of mind! xx

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