By Kim Commins-Tzoumakas | January 30, 2019
“It’s not selfish to love yourself, take care of yourself, and to make your happiness a priority. It’s necessary.” – Mandy Hale, Author
As women, we’re often consumed by what’s going on in the world around us. After all, we’re wives, mothers, daughters, sisters, granddaughters, colleagues, business owners, employees, and friends with a seemingly never-ending “to do” list of responsibilities. But naturally, we wouldn’t have it any other way – trust me, I get it.
The ability to “do it all” is something I’ve always deeply admired about women. We’re determined, strong, compassionate, and ready to take on anything life throws at us. However, when our lives get hectic, it’s easy to forget to allow ourselves the self-care we need and deserve. In fact, we’re typically so busy taking care of our loved ones, our careers, and other duties that we neglect to take care of ourselves altogether.
One exception to this is come every October the world turns pink as people nationwide unite to support Breast Cancer Awareness Month. During this time, women are at a heightened alert as they’re encouraged to practice prevention and to get their yearly mammogram. This sort of support and rallying is necessary. Thus, the reason we launched our #NotMy8 campaign. I will continue to be relentless about this cause.
But today, as part of Cervical Health Awareness Month, I’d like to bring awareness to cervical cancer and offer some increased knowledge about the disease that also impacts thousands of women worldwide.
Cervical cancer, though less discussed than breast cancer, is a leading cause of cancer death for American women. According to the American Cancer Society, more than 13,000 new cases of invasive cervical cancer will be diagnosed in 2019 while far more cases of cervical pre-cancers will be detected.
Dr. James “Jimmy” Orr is a member of our 21st Century Dream Team and a dedicated physician at his practice, Florida Gynecologic Oncology, in Fort Myers, Florida. His core belief is that all women with suspected or diagnosed gynecologic cancer should have access to the best treatment available. And of course, I share that same belief with him and am proud that through our talented Dream Team, we can provide that for woman locally and abroad.
During a recent interview for a Health Matters television segment, Dr. Orr’s colleague, Dr. Fadi Abu Shahin, emphasized the importance of Pap smear screening calling it “the most successful screening test for any cancer.”
As with any cancer prevention, routine screenings are imperative. However, the strong point of a Pap smear screening is that it can detect pre-cancerous changes years before they become cancer, enabling proper treatment early enough to prevent it.
“The incorporation of routine screening into women’s health care has increased the detection of “premalignant” disease, which offers a time when the disease should be 100% curable,” said Dr. Orr. He emphasized, “as with nearly all cancers, early detection is a key to offering curative treatment!”
Though I’m not a trained physician, my desire is to use my role to advocate for anyone facing a cancer diagnosis or risk and provide reliable information directly from our highly qualified and devoted Dream Team members. In a world where self-care and self-love are finally on the rise, I ask that we all take the time to protect the most important thing we have – our health. Please get your screening today and watch for any unusual signs or symptoms.
The Hug Every Day blog will offer periodic insights and guidance from the 21st Century CEO, Kim Commins-Tzoumakas. Kim is no-nonsense, but also very caring. And she is excited to have this opportunity to share her vision for 21C with you.