May 13-19, 2018 is National Women’s Health Week. Why do women need an awareness week to remind them of the importance of their health? Many women spend so much time dedicated to caring for others they often neglect to care for themselves, which means potentially serious health concerns are overlooked.
Ladies, we and your families want you around for a long, long time. We want to share a few ways you can start taking better care of yourself this week. Some of these tips only require a few easy steps each day or a quick visit to a doctor, but all can lead to a longer, healthier, more vibrant life.
Simple Ways to Care for Yourself Every Day
- Exercise. The American Heart Association recommends walking or performing other vigorous aerobic exercises for 30 minutes a day at least 3 times per week. This small amount of exercise can reduce blood pressure and high cholesterol, two conditions that lead to heart disease, one of the leading causes of death in American women.
- Eat your fruits and veggies daily, particularly those richest in nutrients.
- Drink plenty of water every day.
- Get plenty of rest. The National Sleep Foundation recommends at least 7-9 hours of sleep for adults ages 18-64, and at least 7-8 hours for those 65 and older.
Visits to Schedule with Your Physician
If you don’t already know this, early detection of disease is the best way to save a life. Cleveland Clinic recommends women receive the following screenings to stay on top of their health.
- Breast cancer screenings. Women 40 and older should schedule a mammogram screening every year. Women younger than 40 with a history of breast cancer in their family should consult a physician for a recommendation on when to schedule their first screening.
- Cervical cancer screenings. Women should begin receiving pap screenings as early as age 21, with follow-up screenings every 2 to 5 years, depending on their personal and family history.
- Colorectal screening. Women 50 and older should begin undergoing colonoscopy exams every 10 years, or less if the disease is present in family history.
- Routine physical screenings. Visit your doctor each year for a routine physical exam to check blood pressure, cholesterol and early signs of serious health conditions.
Vaccination against disease doesn’t end with adulthood and the following immunizations can help keep you healthy year after year.
- Shingles vaccine. This immunization is for adults who have not yet had shingles but have had chickenpox in their lifetime and can prevent months of painful symptoms related to shingles.
- Tetanus booster. The Tdap booster protects against tetanus, diphtheria and whooping cough, and doctors recommend receiving a new dose every 10 years.
- Pneumonia vaccine. PneumoVax® is recommended for women ages 60 and older, though women with chronic health problems may receive the vaccine before reaching this age.
- Flu immunization. The flu is more deadly in children and older adults, which is why women over 50 should take care to get the vaccine every year. Women who are younger than 50, particularly pregnant mothers and mothers of young children, should receive the vaccine to keep themselves and their families flu-free.
Elite Care can help you take care of immunizations, screenings and checkups you may be missing out on. Start taking better care of yourself today by scheduling a wellness checkup with Elite Care today.