According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, HPV is currently the most common sexually transmitted viral infection that stands to be life-threatening if ignored for too long.
Well, there are over 100 types of HPV, but not all of them will manifest as health issues. But certain types can lead to various kinds of cancers. Therefore, it’s always a good idea to be on the safe side and know how to keep yourself safe from this infection.
You can prevent the human papillomavirus from getting to you in various ways by practising some easy habits and adapting to a healthier lifestyle.
Tips To Prevent Human Papillomavirus (HPV)
Here are seven golden ways to prevent the human papillomavirus from wreaking havoc on your body.
1. Get Vaccinated
The HPV vaccine offers protection against the most cancerous types of HPV, hence protecting you from falling victim to cervical cancers and other HPV-related cancers (including anal, cervical, and oral cancers). In addition, the HPV vaccine can also offer protection against genital warts.
It is recommended to be vaccinated by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to get the vaccine shots before exposure to sexually transmitted strains of HPV. The vaccine is certified and approved for girls, boys, women, and men ages 9 to 45.
2. Use Condoms
Don’t devoid yourself of the pleasure of sex but do it with protection. It’s essential to use condoms, especially when having intercourse with multiple partners, to prevent the virus from being transmitted into you.
Condoms serve as a barrier and prevent the entry of HPV into your body while you enjoy safe sexual intercourse. So it’s better to properly use latex condoms to reduce the risk of transmission of HPV by a proper margin.
3. Get Circumcised
Getting circumcised helps lower the risk of transmission of HPV from person to person. A variety of studies show that circumcised men have a lower risk of transmitting the HPV virus. But on the contrary, several studies also show how circumcised men may have a ten-fold more significant risk of contracting HPV than uncircumcised men.
Simply put, just getting the males circumcised is not the end of the deal. The powerful duo of circumcision and vaccination can get the job done quite nicely. Therefore, parents need to ensure that they are getting their boys vaccinated to prevent the transmission of HPV completely.
4. Practise Regular Testing
The best way to save yourself from any disease is by ensuring monthly screening or testing. You should practice regular testing and ensure that your disease is caught up in time. The penile or cervical swab is the gold standard to confirm if you have contracted the human papillomavirus or not.
Ensure to get bi-annually tested if you do not indulge in intercourse with multiple partners. However, make getting tested a monthly habit if you have multiple partners, just to be on the safe side.
5. Maintain A Healthy Lifestyle
What is there that maintaining a healthy lifestyle cannot save you from?
Regularly exercising, eating a balanced diet, ensuring proper hygiene and cleaning your private parts can extend your life expectancy by several years. These habits will enable you to have a better and longer life expectancy even if you contract some disease.
Moreover, including fruits, fibre, and water in your diet will make your bowel and urinary movements easier and better, cleansing your body of toxins as much as possible.
6. Stop Smoking Or Doing Drugs
The ability of your immune system to fight off viruses decreases if your lung function is compromised, and that’s what smoking or drugs do to your system. Hence, prevent yourself from summoning the angel of death earlier than expected and quit smoking as soon as possible.
7. Practice Safe Sex At All Costs
At any age, make sure you do not have any reservations about having sex for whatsoever reason. Moreover, if you do, it’s better to abstain than continue indulging in sexual intercourse.
Make sure you are using protection and also ensuring proper screening and testing. So that even if the virus lingers in on you, it can be caught early and treated to prevent genital warts or progression of disease from happening.
Health Problems Caused By HPV
It’s crucial to understand that an insurgent HPV infection can lead to several health issues like cancer, ultimately life-threatening. This is the reason they are supposed to be timely screened and tested.
Following are some deadly cancers that the human papillomavirus may cause:
- Cervical cancer
- Anal cancer
- Genital warts
- Oropharyngeal cancer
- Vulvar & vaginal cancer
HPV infection is quite common, and most people do contract it at some point. However, it’s your immune system and daily habits that determine if it’s going to get nasty or not. If you are practising healthy and clean habits, taking proper protection, and ensuring that you get tested and screened if and when required, you are likely to be as safe from the viral effects as possible.
Contracting the human papillomavirus can be harmful. In addition, it may bring some emotional turmoil with itself. But by following the preventive measures described above, you can save yourself from falling victim to its deadly effects and consequences.
HPV or any other viral disease can cause various problems, especially cancers, never good news. They bring mental and physical stress with themselves. Moreover, contracting a deadly virus can cause family problems and social problems at work or with friends, making one very self-conscious.
However, trying your best to have a healthy lifestyle by practising safe sex and getting vaccinated can undoubtedly help protect you from this virus. HPV is certainly deadly but nothing that can’t be tackled or overcome. So, protect yourself and your partner by the following prevention as it’s certainly better than cure.