Women’s bodies are constantly the topic of conversation, so why don’t we talk about getting tested more often? It’s probably because of the awkward stigmas around what getting tested could entail. Maybe you’re scared of the results, or maybe you really just hate doctor visits, maybe you think it’s embarrassing. Whatever your reasons, it’s important to get yearly checkups when possible and understand how getting tested could potentially save your life.
Sandra Zicherman, Ph.D., answered some common questions about getting tested in our FindSisterhood app under the Getting Tested Spotlight. Zicherman runs an online chatroom called Mom Rant which discusses issues just like this one. Sandra stresses that being a mom doesn’t have to mean that you neglect yourself, and you should actually be making your health a priority. So what exactly should you be getting tested for?
For starters, you should start with the asics. Getting a yearly physical is a great way to help you monitor your help, and your general practitioner can also help lead you to other specialists such as an OBGYN.
Visiting an OBGYN can be a terrifying experience for even the bravest women, but monitoring your health and possibly preventing life-threatening illnesses by doing so is enough of a payoff. It can also actually make life a little less stressful knowing that you know what’s going on with your health instead of just wondering! This can be especially true if you know you have a family history of illnesses such as breast cancer or cervical cancer. Knowing in the early stages can help treat some things before they become life-threatening. You should also be comfortable asking your doctor anything that has to do with your body, whether big or small. It might be a little uncomfortable but remember that they’re there to help you not to judge.
Getting tested can also mean getting tested for STDs. And YES, you should still be getting tested even if you are in a committed relationship. You should also definitely be talking about these things with your partner and ask them if they have been tested. This includes anyone that may think that because they use protection every time that they are in the clear. It might sound like a lot but when it comes to your health you can never be too careful. Your health is the most important thing so take it seriously and be honest with your doctor!
For more conversations about getting tested and topics like it visit our FindSisterhood app.