I hear so many women give crazy reasons not to have their annual well woman’s exams. “I’m not fresh”, “I don’t want anyone poking me down there” or “I need a wax before you go there”.
Well ladies, I know it’s not the most comfortable thing you do in a day. I know it’s not fun. And believe me, you not having a wax isn’t going to end you life.
Here’s the reality: Our staff are in this profession because we love women, health, proactive healthcare, pregnancy, babies and guiding women through menopause. We’re here to be your facilitators, educators and guides – depending on where you’re at on your path. In 99.9% of cases, scared patients smile or laugh at the end of their appointment and say, “That wasn’t bad at all…” Use your annual visits to find the right medical professionals for you and pretty soon, your annual visits will be a chance to catch up with your doctor-friend, as you empower yourself learning more about your body, your options and your reproductive life.
It hurts. Your annual exam absolutely should not hurt. If you have been hurt during the exam, communicate immediately to him or her to resolve the situation or begin looking for referrals for someone with a more gentle hand. Your pelvic exam should not cause any pain whatsoever. A pap smear may cause a gentle twinge, but should never be dramatic enough to be considered overtly painful.
But not getting that annual exam done COULD contribute to a life-altering, and even ending, misdiagnosis. WE, as medical professionals, want to make sure you’re as healthy as possible, and for you to live a long healthy life.
Here are some of the risks you take by skipping that exam:
Cancer. Yes the C word… CANCER. These exams help us find atypical cells that have developed in the uterus or cervix. Finding these cells early can mean the difference between a simple procedure, and a diagnosis none of us want.
Other diagnosis could be fibroids, endometriosis, infertility, hormone replacement needs… even diagnosis of sexually transmitted disease and undiagnosed breast or rectal cancer, Again…. That C word.
Believe me, I speak from experience. I put off my exams for years. I was too busy to fit it in my schedule. That was my excuse. Work, life, school, travel. You name it… I used it as a reason to not make that appointment.
Don’t do that. Don’t procrastinate. Get your annual exam and make sure you have all of the information necessary to be the healthiest woman you can be. Like I said before, it can be life-saving.