HEALTH CHECK-UPS WOMEN SHOULD SCHEDULE IN THEIR 20S, 30S, 40S, AND 50+

A doctor demonstrates how a chemotherapy machine is used. The Aga Khan Hospital has launched a new chemotherapy facility in Mombasa County.
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Women need to have regular health checks. Regular medical check-ups help you stay healthy and pick up early warning signs of ailments. Many diseases such as cardiovascular (heart) disease, diabetes, and some cancers can be detected in their early stages when treatment is often more effective.

Having a general check-up every year is necessary and should involve talking to your doctor about your medical history, your family’s history of the disease and your lifestyle choices such as diet, sexual habits, exercise habits and whether or not you smoke or drink alcohol.

If you have high-risk factors – such as a family history of a particular ailment – it may be more likely that you will develop it. Regular check-ups may help your doctor pick up early warning signs such as high blood pressure, cancer and the rest.

Make self-exams part of your regular health and beauty routine. This will help you live a healthy, beautiful and long life!

IN YOUR 20S AND BEYOND


Primary care physician, trained in either family: It is important to check for gastritis, inflammatory bowel disease, and colon cancer. You should also get a fasting blood sugar test every two years or so to screen for diabetes.

Gynecologist: Once a year. Includes Pap smear, pelvic exam, clinical breast exam and also check for STDs if you are sexually active.

Dentist: Every six months for teeth cleaning and oral exam.

Dermatologist: If you’re fair-skinned or have a family history of skin cancer, you’ll want an annual appointment. Otherwise, go if you have any suspicious moles or skin problems.

Vaccinations: It is important to get vaccinated against tetanus, chickenpox etc.

IN YOUR 30S, ADD


Cholesterol screening: You need one every five years if your last test was normal. Some experts say you can wait until your 40s to start unless you’re at increased risk for heart disease because of smoking, family history, obesity, high blood pressure, or diabetes.

IN YOUR 40S, ADD


Mammogram: The rigorous and evidence-based U.S. Preventive Services Task Force has recommended starting annual screenings at 40; other guidelines suggest beginning at 50.

Stress echocardiogram: Get a baseline analysis of how your heart is holding up.

Ophthalmologist: YMany doctors advise going annually, although others recommend every two to four years until age 65, then annually. The visit should include an intraocular pressure measurement for glaucoma.

IN YOUR 50S AND ABOVE, ADD


Colonoscopy: Every five years.

Bone density scan: Start routine testing at menopause—earlier if you’re small-framed, your weight is very low, you have a mother with osteoporosis, or you’ve had fractures (other than in a freak accident) after age 45. Some experts recommend waiting until you are 65 unless there are risk factors
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