These Scary Stats Will (Hopefully) Get You To Your Doctor’s Office For A Mammogram

credit: @sofiavergara / Instagram

For some of us it’s getting that triennial pam smear, for others it’s mammograms. As women, most of dread a particular procedure no matter how important it is to our health. Of course, while having our boobs mashed into cold medical machines sounds like the exact opposite of a fun time, it’s one of those things we just have to do.

Sofia Vergara knows the story and it’s exactly why she’s posting about it on Instagram with a cry face emoji.

The “Modern Family” star posted her recent visit for her checkup to support Breast Cancer Awareness Month because “You have to do it!”

You have to do it!!!???? #mammogram ?#medicalimaging women's imaging.

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In a Friday video on Instagram, Vergara shared a footage of herself gearing up for a breast exam. Honestly she makes it look like so much fun, we’re actually feeling pumped to go to our own. “You have to do it!” she captioned. It’s a message we hope is particularly encouraging for Latinas especially considering new studies about our health. Recent research has found that Latinas and women of color are more at risk when it comes to breast cancer fatalities. Mostly this is due to a lack of outreach to Latinas for medical breast cancer research. That divide is hurting a wide array of Latina groups including Mexican, Cuban and Puerto Rican women. And it doesn’t end there.

When it comes to our general health, it turns out Latinas aren’t so great about checking in with the doctor either. According to the most recent Census report, Latinos are the group least likely to take a trip to the doctor’s office. In fact, at the time of the census, 42% of Latinos had never made their annual visit to the doctor. The reasons might seem obvious but it’s important to note how deeply rooted they are in cultural barriers and fears.

In the U.S., nearly a quarter of Latinos are undocumented and thus unable to qualify for Medicare.

It’s a huge problem plaguing the United State’s Latino community. Even during the Obama administration when Latinos were assured their legal status on Obamacare applications would not be provided to immigration services, exposure remained a major fear factor. We can only imagine the number of undocumented adults gritting their teeth through medical pains and concerns now. There’s also the issue of American-born children whose undocumented parents fear seeking proper medical care from them as well. Among these fears, there are more. Many Latinos avoid the doctor because of language barriers, stigma, fear of missing work and a distrust for Western medication. For Latinas, trust in their physician is also a concern.

Latinas “did not feel safe sharing information if these qualities were absent.”

A 2008 study is reflective of that fact that Latinas refuse to reveal personal information when they feel they can’t trust their doctor. “Such qualities as compassion, caring, human interest, and kindness were important to many Latinas, who did not feel safe sharing information if these qualities were absent. Language barriers caused problems with physician-patient interaction, which were complicated by the presence of a translator. Physicians being male or younger could make disclosure difficult, especially around issues of sexuality and genital examination.”

The American Cancer Society says women should start to receive regular screenings by the age of 40.

spread that Latina magic!✨ Let’s empower each other and love one another. Tag your Latina bestie in the comments! ???

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While our 40s are an ideal time to start receiving breast cancer screenings, it’s important for women to remember that breast cancer in young women isn’t impossible. Mammogram screenings are an essential for detecting breast cancer in all women, whether they experience symptoms or not. We’re so happy Sofia Vergara is bringing this issue to the Latina community’s attention — especially during Breast Cancer Awareness Month!


Read: This Doctor Saw Latinas Were Being Passed Over In Breast Cancer Research, Now She’s Starting An Army

Don’t forget to remind your tías and primas to get checked! Share this post about the importance of mammograms and get your friends to share pics of their mammogram visits!