I HAVE just received my first invite for a smear test and I am not sure what to expect so I'm a bit nervous. Will it hurt?

DON'T worry if you feel anxious about having your smear test, this is normal and many women feel like this.

It can help to be as informed as possible about what happens during a typical screening, so it's good that you have asked.

The cervical screening test (smear test) involves taking cells from your cervix (neck of your womb) and examining them for changes.

At your GP surgery, a health professional will check your details and explain the test to you, which usually takes no more than five minutes.

You'll have an opportunity to ask questions and discuss any concerns. If you are feeling significantly anxious let them know during this discussion.

Before the test starts, they should offer you a sheet or blanket to cover yourself.

When you're ready, they'll ask you to undress from the waist down or just remove your underwear if wearing a skirt.

You will need to lie on your back on an examining bed and bend your knees.

Some examination beds may have stirrups on them.

If yours does, you will need to place your feet in the stirrups.

They'll then insert a speculum into your vagina to hold it open and use a soft brush to collect a sample of cells from your cervix.

After your test, the health professional will send your cells to a laboratory for examination.

You’ll usually get your results in the post within four weeks. If you’d like them to send your results to another address, please tell the person doing the test. They'll also send your results to your GP and whoever took your test.

I WAS shocked to hear Lung cancer is the most common cancer in Scotland with around 5,000 new cases diagnosed every year. Can you give me some suggestions to help prevent it?

Lung cancer mainly affects older people. It's rare in people younger than 40, and the rates of lung cancer rise sharply with age. Lung cancer is most commonly diagnosed in people aged 70-74.

If you smoke, the best way to prevent lung cancer and other serious conditions is to stop smoking as soon as possible.

However long you have been smoking, it's always worth quitting. So if you smoke and are considering stopping contact our Smokeline advisor on 0800 84 84 84.

your GP and whoever took your test.

Research suggests that eating a low-fat, high-fibre diet, including at least five portions a day of fresh fruit and vegetables and plenty of whole grains, can reduce your risk of lung cancer, as well as other types of cancer and heart disease.

There's strong evidence to suggest that regular exercise can lower the risk of developing lung cancer and other types of cancer.

Adults should do at least 150 minutes (2 hours and 30 minutes) of moderate-intensity aerobic activity each week.

WHAT is Kyphosis?

Everyone has a slightly curved spine but Kyphosis is an abnormal curving that causes the top of the back to appear hunched.

In mild cases of Kyphosis, there will be no other symptoms. More severe cases can associated with back pain and tenderness. Very severe cases can cause difficulties with breathing or eating.

A physical examination by your GP can confirm an abnormal curve in the spine. They may ask you to do simple exercises or lie down in order to confirm the diagnosis. Some curved spines are associated with back posture and can be corrected by sitting correctly and exercising to strengthen the back.

Treatment depends on the type of Kyphosis, and whether the curve in the spine is causing pain or any other symptoms. Surgery is not usually required, unless Kyphosis is severe. Children with Kyphosis may find their symptoms improve by the use of a back brace.