If you were offered the opportunity to find health problems before they started, wouldn’t you jump at the chance? National Women’s Checkup Day is a good time to remind you all that just one day of paying attention to your health could add years to your life.
Yet, despite that chance, when you consider the bulk of your to-do list, it’s no wonder that you might feel a bit weighed down with all the things competing for your time and attention.
And without fail, the something that almost always falls to the bottom of the list is you.
Yet, that thingâ€”that most important thingâ€”is too important to ignore. Sadly, many women feel that it’s selfish to put themselves first. This is the reason HealthyWomen partnered with GCI Health to launch the HealthiHer Movement. This new movement encourages women to make self-care a priority in their lives. Check out the HealthiHer Facebook page for more information and join our movement for a healthier life!
Taking care of yourself doesn’t mean you have to abandon all your responsibilities and escape to some far-flung paradise or escape to a spa for the day or even a few hours. It doesn’t mean you need to ignore everyone around you and only do things that bring you joy and fulfillment.Â
Read about Self-Care Activities That Won’t Break the Bank.
National Women’s Checkup Day was created by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services to remind women to take care of themselves and their health by scheduling appointments with their health care providers. It is celebrated annually on the second Monday of May as part of National Women’s Health Week. This year’s date is May 14.Â
There are countless ways to stay healthy, but it all starts with taking control and making the time to see your health care provider.Â
By taking control, you can often find problems early, when the chances of treatingâ€”and curing themâ€”are better. By taking control, you have the opportunity to discuss and explore the proper screenings and exams that can rule out certain problems and highlight others.Â
By taking control, you can get an idea of what’s going on in your bodyâ€”things that you might otherwise be unaware of. For example, your blood pressure. High blood pressure is called “the silent killer” for a reason: You can have it and not know it. That’s because there are usually no symptomsâ€”until it’s already done considerable damage to your heart and arteries. The best way to protect yourself is to have it checked and know what the numbers mean. Â
Likewise, cancer and cholesterol screenings, vaccinations and your lifestyle and family history are all important matters worth exploring to help you stay healthy.Â Â
It may cost a little bit of your time, but an annual checkup should not cost you anything extra if you have health insurance. Most health plans cover certain preventive care benefits without a co-pay, coinsurance or having to meet your deductible. (For those who need to find other options regardless of your ability to pay, click here.)
Different women need different things, depending on their age and health status. Here are some of the particulars (tests, medications or vaccines) the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services suggest a woman in her 50s should ask about each year:
- Low-dose aspirin
- Â Blood pressureÂ
- Colorectal cancerÂ
- Hepatitis B and hepatitis C
- Lung cancer (55 and older)
- Measles, mumps and rubella
- Pap and HPV
- Sexually transmitted infections
- Tetanus, diphtheria or whooping cough
If you don’t fall into that age group, click here to see what you need to do to take control of your health at any age.Â
I urge you all to do it today.Â
Nurses are among the most committed and caring health care providers around.OK, I may be biased. In addition to running HealthyWomen, I am also a nurse. After graduating college with my business degree, I j…
Make self-care a priority in your everyday life, so you can ultimately become a “healthier her”â€”for yourself and your family.
HealthyWomen, GCI Health, the leading healthcare-focused global public relations agency, and REDBOOK magazine, the iconic women’s magazine that reaches millions, partnered to launch a HealthiHER survey of women ages 30-60 years old to better understand how women feel about their health. CLICK HERE to read more about the results in REDBOOK magazine.
When you put your health first, everything else falls into place. Like most things, establishing a self-care routine that works for you will take time. Sign up for the weekly HealthiHER newsletter, which provides motivation, education, and healthy living tips you can realistically execute.
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Want to get started right now?! We love it. There isn’t one right way to take care of yourself, so we’re giving you lots of options. These pillars from the International Self-Care Foundation are at the core of self-care. Start small, pick one thing to focus on and then build up.
When you don’t understand or can’t act on your own health care, it can contribute to poor health. If you don’t comprehend instructions, you may have difficulty taking your medicine correctly or managing a health condition. CLICK HERE for how to improve your health literacy in 7 steps.
Self-Awareness of Physical and Mental Conditions
It’s important to measure and monitor your health. Key measurements of health include:
Knowing your family’s medical history. CLICK HERE for a printable family medical history questionnaire.
Staying up to date with preventive health screenings.CLICK HERE to see preventive health screenings for women.
Knowing your BMI. CLICK HERE to calculate your BMI.
Tracking your sleep patterns. CLICK HERE to find out how much sleep you really need.
Managing daily stressors. CLICK HERE for 6 tops to manage stress.
Focusing on your mental health. CLICK HERE for signs of mental illness.
Regular exercise can significantly improve your overall health and mood. CLICK HERE to calculate your target heart rate.
Food is fuel for your body. Feed your body well, and you’ll feel well. CLICK HERE for healthy recipes.
Risk Avoidance or Mitigation
The key factors here are to:
Avoid smoking. CLICK HERE for 22 reasons you should quit smoking today.
Limit alcohol intake. CLICK HERE for signs of alcoholism..
Use sunscreen. CLICK HERE for how to use sunscreen the right way.
The most important part of hygiene is so simple: wash your hands. In addition to that, CLICK HERE for feminine hygiene tips.
Rational and Responsible Use of Products, Services, Diagnostics and Medicines
Think twice before you use over-the-counter medicines. CLICK HERE for OTC medicine safety guidelines.
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