Pap Smear 101: At Your Cervix

January is Cervical Health Awareness Month! Cervical health is commonly overlooked or forgotten about, but over 14,000 humans with cervixes are diagnosed with cervical cancer every year in the United States.

But the disease is preventable with vaccination and appropriate screening! Checking in on your cervical health annually with a gynecologist or OB-GYN is necessary for caring for your body. 

If you’re not sure exactly what this donut-shaped organ is and does, here’s the cervix definition: the lower part of the uterus (womb) in the human female reproductive system that forms a canal between the uterus and vagina.

Remember, this organ – composed primarily of fibromuscular tissue – is distinct from the uterus and has its own anatomical structure. Cervix anatomy includes two main portions: the ectocervix and the endocervix or endocervical canal.

Never had a pap smear? Have no fear! Add cervical health care to your New Year's Resolution this year. There’s a first time for everything. During your gyno exam, your healthcare provider may also test you for sexually transmitted infections (STIs), cysts, cervical mucus, cervicitis, and pregnancy. 

What is a pap test? A pap smear collects cells from your cervix, which connects the bottom of your uterus to the top of your vaginal canal. You feel a little bit of pressure, and it’s a quick and easy process!

Your cervical health doesn’t wait for you, so it’s important not to wait on it! Get yourself a cervix plush toy as a reminder to love your cervical health. There’s no need to be nervous about your pap smear. Relax before your pap with a comfy cervix pillow BFF.

If you’re looking to learn more about Cervical Health Awareness, check in with the National Cervical Cancer Coalition.

Don’t fear the smear! Stay calm during your pap smear with a pap star cervix plushie, and with the knowledge of exactly what your OB-GYN is doing during your annual exam. 

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