This morning twitter selected one of my tweets to display on the homepage.
"2 years ago Jade Goody sadly died of cervical cancer aged 27. Don't forget to get checked and remind others."
It's a serious message that should not be ignore.
What is also interesting is the range of replies I got ranging from RTs, to replies of support, replies of people whose loved ones are suffering. Finally there were some replies which were very unconstructive.
In the UK women over 25 are automatically invited to smears every 2 years. 3.3 million people took the test. This rose after Jade's diagnosis, but in 09/10 fell back down. Only 1 in 3 under 30 year olds have smears (of those invited). No one will chase you up or force you to go, but be sensible and take the invite. The NHS will provide it free. Many women don't get this free so we're lucky.
The other thing worth pointing out is the vaccine jab. This currently helps immunise against the strains of HPV that cause cancer. It is offered to school girls, but some are missed out. If you are someone who has missed out or someone who is over 18....speak to your GP. You could be eligible for this jab, but the GP is not allowed to advertise it (because of budget laws). You have to ask for the HPV jab.
Why? Well in this country the jab costs money and if everyone was told then the uptake would cost lots. They would rather let the situation carry on than potentially save a few lives but giving out the vaccine. A bit sickening.
I was lucky enough to have the jab a few years back by going and asking my GP. I was in for something else and asked about it and was found to be eligible. No one would have ever told me that. So please don't be afraid to ask or tell your friends.
No matter how red faced you get, every woman should be having the jabs or smear tests.
It takes seconds but could give you years.
Please retweet, reblog, email, text- whatever but put a reminder in your diary!
Please feel free to share your smear experience below to help put minds at rest!