I have HPV, a virus that makes women more suceptible to cervical cancer.
My aunt died of cervical cancer from the virus, which is preventable and treatable.
If she had just gone for her regular check-ups, she could've prevented her own death.
Now, another aunt is suffering from the exact same thing. The virus, cancer, and her own slow death.
Now I have cervical cancer on both sides of my family.
At 21, I hadn't had any checkups. I found out, and now I know.
I don't have cancerous or pre-cancerous cells as of now, so I'm in the clear.
The virus almost always goes away on its own, fought off by the immune system. But, I smoked, and smoking is not good for the immune system.
She basically said, It won't go away as long as you keep smoking.
That's when it clicked for me. Choose to smoke and allow a virus to stay in my body that may cause cancer (not to mention lung cancer from smoking itself).....or choose to quit and let my immune system strengthen and rid the virus.
The decision was a no brainer. If I continued smoking, I'd be forbidding my body to getting better, and let a virus roost that may kill me.
I'd have to be an idiot to not quit.
For women with this common virus, smoking one cigarette is equivalent (as in, damaging) as smoking three.
Recent research shows that nicotine actually affects the cervical cells.
Also, women shouldn't smoke while on birth control. It can increase the risk of blood clots by 50%.
So, as a woman at high risk for cancer, I finally made the decision to quit.
I'm 22. I've been smoking regularly since I was 17 or 18 years old. On and off from 15-17 y/o. So, it's been a few years, and I finally grew up.