I would like to introduce you to a part of your body you likely haven’t met: your cervix. She is hidden internally, which is probably why you haven’t been introduced yet, but she performs many vital functions in your body. You have likely heard about the cervix related to illnesses like cervical cancer, HPV (human papilloma virus) or abnormal cells on Pap test results. But I’d like to talk about her in health and the marvellous functions she takes care of for you!
The cervix, aka the “gateway to life”, keeps you healthy by performing the following functions:
1. Menstruation – each month the cervix opens slightly to allow the shedding of the uterine lining and blood pass through with the purpose of cleansing and renewing.
2. Sexual function – the cervix produces mucus that lubricates the vagina and makes sexual intercourse possible in a pleasurable and pain-free way. The consistency of this lubrication changes from day to day, allowing women to track their menstrual cycle (if you want to know more, email me). During ovulation, the lubrication enables the sperm to travel through the cervix to meet the egg, making conception possible.
3. Pregnancy – during pregnancy, the cervix form a mucus plug to keep the baby safely inside the uterus until it’s time to meet the world. During labour, this is the part that dilates to birth the baby.
It’s Pap Awareness Week! Getting your Pap test is a unique opportunity to meet your cervix and make sure she is healthy.
For all my male readers, please talk to your gal pals about the importance of Pap testing as a part of an annual physical exam.
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