How to make your cervical test more comfortable

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The federal government wishes to rebrand smear tests as “cervical screening” due to the fact that less females are opting for the test.

The screening is generally a medical examination for the cervix.

But there’s no doubt it has a bad track record – and the word “smear” does not precisely offer the treatment.

Whether you’re stressed it’ll harm or be humiliating, we asked Dr Philippa Kaye about how you can make your test simpler – since it does conserve lives.

Time your visit with your duration

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Media caption Chloe Delevingne had a smear test reside on the Victoria Derbyshire program

“The finest time to have your smear test is when you’re not bleeding,” states Dr Kaye, as that can impact the test.

“Ideally, you would organize it for someplace in the middle of your cycle or towards completion of your cycle.”

Dr Kaye includes the test itself may trigger some discomfort comparable to menstrual cramps, “however that lasts optimum 30 seconds, and after that it’s gone”.

Wear comfy clothing

The physician or nurse taking the test requires you to be unwinded when taking the test – so ensure you’re comfy.

“Maybe you wish to use a skirt, so that we can raise that up and you still feel more covered – rather than removing denims or leggings,” states Dr Kaye.

Ask for a female to do the test

If you’re more comfy with a female medical professional or nurse doing the test, you can request one.

“I can’t ensure that is constantly offered, however in the bulk of GP services it is,” states Dr Kaye.

Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption The speculum is placed into the vaginal area

Ask for a smaller sized speculum

The speculum is the clear plastic instrument which is placed into the vaginal area to hold it open.

It should not require to be heated up at all.

“If you can endure sex or a sex toy, many people will have the ability to endure a speculum,” discusses Dr Kaye.

But if it hurts, then your medical professional or nurse can utilize a smaller sized one.

Put the speculum in yourself

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Media caption What takes place throughout a smear test?

“In my experience that’s never ever taken place to me – if someone wished to attempt, I would not always have an issue with it,” states Dr Kaye.

“It may require a small modification in placing – however I would want to speak about it and attempt.”

There is talk of a self-sampling test can be found in, which would simply include putting a swab in the vaginal area.

“I believe it is something we are going to carry out in the future and will motivate more females to screen.”

Ask to alter position

If you feel discomfort or pain, inform the physician or nurse doing the test.

“Most ladies do it on their backs, with their upper hands in a diamond shape, however we might do it pushing your side,” states Dr Kaye.

“Slow your breathing down, put your hands at hand, and think of dropping your bottom into the sofa.

“We may ask you to put your hands below your bottom, or we may ask you to cough.”

That can assist the speculum be placed much easier.

Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption The swab takes some cells from the cervix to be checked

Don’t utilize lube

“It’s essential that you do not utilize spermicide or great deals of lubes in the 24 hours prior to the test, since it can hinder the test itself,” states Dr Kaye.

But if you’re uneasy, the physician or nurse might put a percentage of lube on the speculum prior to placing it.

Use pain relievers if required

Painkillers are not normally needed, however “if you were truly concerned and believe it would assist, you might take paracetamol or ibuprofen in the past,” states Dr Kaye.

“If you feel that would assist you, then there’s no damage, in doing that.”

Don’t self-medicate beyond that though

Save the alcohol for after the test.

“I desire females to be empowered – to be as unwinded and able to have their smear test as possible.

“That may suggest bringing a buddy, or having a benefit or deal with later on – whatever assists you manage.”

But, “if you are intoxicated, then you are not able to have real grant have the test.”

That implies it’s extremely not likely your health care specialist will permit you to have it.

I’m concerned about taking my clothing off in front of somebody else

“People constantly apologise to me that they have not waxed,” states Dr Kaye.

“They’re fretted about their odor, they’re fretted about their pubic hair or leg hair.

“The fact is, your health care specialist is not considering that.

“We have actually seen countless genital areas – they’re all various and they’re all typical.

“We’re not ashamed, and I hope that assists you be less ashamed about having the test.”

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Media caption Why are ladies from ethnic minority backgrounds less most likely to have the HPV vaccine?

Ask for more time if you require it

“If you are the survivor of a sexual attack, we comprehend that this might be a truly hard time,” Dr Kaye informs Newsbeat.

“Tell us. Let us book you a double visit so we can offer you more time. Perhaps you wish to have a buddy along too.”

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Listen to Newsbeat live at 12:45 and 17:45 every weekday on BBC Radio 1 and 1Xtra – if you miss us you can listen back here .

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