When reproductive health is concerned, hardly any aspect is more important than smear test. The procedure is highly reliable to detect pre-cancerous cells that are likely to turn to cancer. Smear test takes hardly a few minutes and is effective to prevent cervical cancer.
In the following sections of the blog post, let us explore some facts related to smear test to help you understand the dos and don’ts more clearly. These tips are shared by an experienced private gynaecologist in London, associated with the Gynaecology Clinic located at Harley Street in Marylebone.
Ask your doctor to explain the procedure in simple words
When your gynaecologist or the nurse attendant explains you every step involved in the smear test procedure, you’re bound to feel less nervous and more at ease. You should also go online to read about other women’s experiences regarding the smear test. These efforts will prepare you with what to expect during your appointment.
Be transparent with your gynaecologist about your sexual history and vaginal health
Many women suffer from a condition called vaginismus – in which they experience pain during penetration whether with fingers, tampon or normal sexual intercourse. It’s important for the gyanecologist to know before carrying out your smear test whether you suffer from it. In fact, it is also important for the doctor to be aware about if you’ve put anything into your vagina in course of intercourse in the past. Without knowing in details about your sexual history as well as vaginal health, it’s difficult for any gynaecologist to reach the correct diagnosis from your smear test.
A smear test is still vital even if you’re vaccinated with HPV vaccine
Many women firmly believe that since they are vaccinated with the human papilloma virus vaccine, they can just cut corner with the smear test. This is high time to get rid of this misconception. Human papilloma virus has innumerable strains while the HPV vaccine protects you only from few of them. Remember that the HPV vaccination only reduces your risk of developing the HPV infection but it does not provide you with blanket cover against the viral disease. Regular smear tests are must irrespective of whether you’re vaccinated or not.
Control your anxiety
Anxiety and tension are two greatest factors that make women feel uncomfortable during smear tests. However, sermons like cut down anxiety are easier said than done. But you have look at the larger perspective and try relaxing your mind during the test. The more relaxed and calm you are the less discomfort you feel when the speculum is inserted into the vagina in the clinical procedure. In order to stay relaxed consider bringing earphones and tune in soothing music while taking your smear test.
Avoid applying any product to the vagina before a smear appointment
You should strictly avoid commercial products like vaginal creams, sexual lubricants, spermicides and such other items 24 hours before taking a smear test. These items come in the way to correctly analyse the cervical cells sample.
Do not take smear tests while on periods
Experienced gynaecologists associated with a renowned clinic for private smear test suggest avoiding smear appointments while you are on periods. Technically smears can be conducted when you’re on menstrual cycle but presence of excessive blood in the sample makes the task of analysing the cervical cells for abnormalities very challenging indeed.