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January Is Cervical Cancer Awareness Month

Are you protected?

One hundred percent of cervical cancers are related to the Human Papillomavirus.

A significant number of penile cancers in men, anal cancers and head and neck cancers in women and men, are also associated with HPV.

The HPV vaccine prevents infection from the HPV types that cause over 90 percent of these cancers.

•74 percent of new infections occur in 15- to 24-yearolds.

•50 percent of young women become infected with HPV within 36 months of first sexual activity.

•Cervical cancer is the No. 1 cancer killer of women worldwide.

•More than 80 of sexually active individuals will be exposed to HPV in their lifetime.

What can you do to decrease your risk?

•Get your HPV vaccine. Two doses are recommended if started at 11 to 14 years of age and three doses for 15 to 26 years of age. The vaccine may be beneficial to older adults who continue to be at risk.

•Abstinence is the most effective measure to decrease your risk. If not abstinent, limit sexual activity to one partner who is also monogamous.

•Condoms can greatly reduce your risk of HPV, but is not 100 percent.

The HPV vaccine, free condoms and family planning services are available at the Roosevelt County Health Department. Call 653-6223 for more information.

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