Let’s be honest. A Pap smear is not something that most women get excited about. Some women are scared of the pain while some others feel it’s too invasive and our uncomfortable about the idea of it. A Pap smear is a screening test for cervical cancer and is often done as a part of a pelvic exam.
A big part of why women are hesitant or averse to the idea of getting a pap smear is the fear of the unknown. The best way to get over your fear is to sit down and discuss all your concerns with a GP or nurse, who’ll then be able to provide you with all the information and support you need to get over your reluctance.
Women should get their first Pap smear at the age of 21.
Between 21 to 29 years of age, you need to get a Pap smear every three years (provided your earlier Pap smears were normal). And between 30 to 65 years of age, once every five years will suffice after a normal Pap smear and a normal HPV.
If you’re over 65 years old or have had a hysterectomy for benign reasons, you’re not required to get a Pap smear anymore.
It’s worth noting that a Pap smear is not the same as a pelvic exam. The guidelines for regular pelvic exams are different. It is recommended that you go for a regular pelvic exam every year.
While a pelvic exam is a medical inspection of one’s reproductive system, a Pap smear is a screening test done to test for cervical cancer. They are both aimed towards assessing gynaecologic health but serve different purposes and should not be confused with one another.
To get a Pap smear, please call us on the number below to book an appointment. If you have any further questions on this topic, our practice nurse will be more than happy to assist you.
CALL 02 4413 2666