HPV...What You Should Know
I’m sure you’ve heard of it before, but do you r e a l l y know what it is? Do you
r e a l l y know how it can affect your life? If not, then keep reading. If yes, then also keep reading. You might learn something new!
HPV is a VERY common sexually transmitted virus. It's so common that most sexually active people will get HPV at some point during their lifetime.
Which is exactly why I want to talk about it.
HPV affects both men and women and is spread through sexual contact. Sometimes, the virus will infect you and then go away on its own without ever causing symptoms. But other times it lingers...it doesn't go away...and it does start causing problems. What kind of problems? Genital warts. Cervical cancer. Big time problems.
HPV has over 150 different strains, all of which cause different symptoms. Strains 16 and 18 are most likely to cause cervical cancer. Whereas strains 6 and 11 cause 90% of genital warts. And other strains cause no symptoms at all. It’s tricky, which is why it's SO important to understand!
For women, HPV can be detected through a pap smear. These are covered by insurance so that means it's $0 for you! It's FREE! It doesn't cost you anything! Pap smears provide early detection of possibly devastating disease so women: p l e a s e stay up to date on your pap smears.
Unfortunately, there is no screening test for men. The only way we know men are infected are when they become symptomatic with genital warts.
But you know what else is important? Approximately 14 MILLION people get infected with HPV every year. This number is insane! So what can we do? GET VACCINATED! Not only does the vaccine protect yourself, but it protects your sexual partners. That's the biggest thing about vaccines...it’s not always about you, it’s about protecting OTHER people! The vaccine is approved for boys and girls beginning as early as age 9 at until and until age 45. It covers the 9 most common and most dangerous strains of HPV.
Protect yourself. Get regular pap smears!
Protect others. Get vaccinated! Or never have sex...(your choice).
As always, these are all things My Local Clinic Home can help you with. Call us to schedule an appointment or call us for a free Q&A...ask us any questions you have! We are here to serve YOU!