This is what I was doing for awhile earlier today

Doctors table with stirrups and gownphoto source

I was in stirrups.

I went to get a PAP smear.  If you are one of the probably 3 male readers I have, this post may not be of much interest to you.

For the ladies, although the specifics of the guidelines have changed in recent years regarding how often you’re supposed to get a PAP, in general, this is what I found here:

Regular Pap tests are an important part of all women’s health care. You should start having Pap tests at age 21 years. How often you should have a Pap test depends on your age and health history:

 

  • Women younger than 30 years should have a Pap test every 2 years.
  • Women aged 30 years and older should have a Pap test every 2 years. After three normal Pap test results in a row, a woman in this age group may have Pap tests every 3 years if
    • she does not have a history of moderate or severe dysplasia
    • she is not infected with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)
    • her immune system is not weakened (for example, if she has had an organ transplant)
    • she was not exposed to diethylstilbestrol (DES) before birth

 

 

So basically every 2 to 3 years, you need to get a PAP.

Along those lines, we need to be doing monthly self breast exams.  And when it’s age-appropriate or when your family history suggests, you should have a mammogram.

After my time in stirrups, I needed chocolate.

Vegan No-Bake Fudge with Chocolate Sprinkles

Overhead of Vegan No-Bake Fudge with Chocolate Sprinkles in pan
 

Slice of Vegan No-Bake Fudge with Chocolate Sprinkles

Or maybe Sex on the BeachNo pun intended.

Woman sitting at outdoor table drinking a drink

Fom my last post on Someone I Miss, it was touching to read all the comments about something or someone you miss in your life.  There were some tear-jerker comments.  It’s ok, a little cry-fest is good for the soul sometimes!

It was wonderful to read about the relationships you have with your grandparents and the loving memories, too.

I was blown away at the touching comments everyone left on that post.  Thank you.

Questions:

1. Do you do monthly self breast exams or (mammograms/ultrasounds if age/family history appropriate)?

Yes, definitely.

2. Do you go the gyno regularly for a PAP or a checkups?

I think that as “healthy living bloggers” we care so much about food choices and the food we put into our bodies.  We are so careful about the food choices we make from organic food to locally grown food to trying to avoid overly processed foods.

We also make exercise and work out choices to benefit our overall health, too.

For me, it seems that taking care of ourselves as women is just one aspect of staying healthy.  We are doing ourselves a great disservice if we don’t stay on top of our health through regular checkups.

I am not a big “go to the doctor” person.  In fact, sometimes I go years in between physicals or checkups since I don’t get sick very frequently.  However, I do feel strongly about well-woman care and visits and staying on top of them.

Not to mention, many women need to go to discuss birth control options and get prescriptions for them so even if you’re not there for a PAP, you may need to go for birth control.  Or perhaps to discuss issues, problems, or concerns you’re having.

3. Are you scared of going to the Gyno (or midwife/nurse practitioner)?   Have you gotten over this, or not?

I don’t think any woman alive says with great enthusiasm, “Oh I ‘get’ to go to the gyno today. Yay!”

No.

It’s one of those things like going to the dentist that for some womens causes anywhere from an ugh reaction (but you grin and bear it) to being totally petrified of going (and the fear actually prevents them from going).

When I was younger I used to stress out for days before my annual exam.

However, having a baby definitely made me lose some of the inhibitions of going since for 40 weeks of pregnancy and then the birth, it’s kind of “open season” up there with someone always wanting to check something.

But, after the pregnancy is done and the baby is born, the “open season” has turned back to “closed for business” as it pertains to speculums and rubber gloves.  Not with quite as much anxiety as pre-baby, but again, not how I’d ideally choose to spend my time.   However, I deem it necessary.

Final Notes: This is one of those posts that as I am publishing it, I am wondering why I am doing it.  I could just as easily not have brought up this topic, but I think it’s important to remind all the ladies that it’s important to take care of yourself, keep up with your exams, don’t be scared, and embrace your beautiful feminine selves.

Caitlin has done a whole series of posts on birth control and Gina has also discussed it in the past, too.

If you don’t agree with my approach or thoughts, that’s fine, because of course everything I mentioned today is simply my opinion.  I am not a doctor or a medical professional and this is not to be considered medical advice.

Time to talk ta-ta’s and va-jay-jay’s.  Talk to me about your experiences!  And yes, using those words will prevent some of the spam and gross google searches I know this post may bring.

We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.com.