Good health is important at every age. There are certain tests that can determine the health of a person.
- Bone-mineral density test
As we age, the density of our bone also reduces, making our entire skeletal system weak. This reduction in bone density is called osteoporosis.
My suggestion is that people should get tested for this after they hit 60. For women it would be better if they got tested for bone-mineral density after they experience menopause.
A lot of people experience hearing loss and don’t realize it until it’s too late. If you are experiencing any difficulty in hearing what others are saying or have a ringing sensation in your ears, it might be a good idea to get tested with an audiogram immediately.
Colorectal cancer claims a lot of lives. However if it is detected early, the chances are that you can get it operated on and get cured in nearly all the cases. A colonoscopy should be done at the age of 50 years and a couple of years earlier for those who have a family history of colorectal cancer.
- Breast examination and mammogram
Breast examinations and mammograms help spot breast cancer. You should regularly examine your breasts by yourself after you hit your 20’s.
But after 40 it is recommended that you get it done clinically at the hospital through a mammogram. A mammogram is similar to an x-ray. So if you detect a problem with your breasts, head to the doctor and get a mammogram and rule out breast cancer. The sooner the cancer is detected the better, as it can be cured then.
- Dental screening
Most people often neglect their teeth and mouth. They think that brushing their teeth is a favor that they are doing to themselves.
You should start visiting a dentist periodically from the moment that you are born till you die. A dentist will examine your mouth and detect if there is any decay, plaque or gum disease or something even more serious like oral cancer and resolve these issues.
- Comprehensive eye examination
Eyes are the way we view the world. A visit to the ophthalmologist will help identify if you are suffering from any vision problems that include glaucoma, cataract or any other problems relating to your cornea or retina.
It is best to start regularly going for eye tests once you touch 40 years of age, and even earlier for those who suffer from diabetes, use steroids or use contacts.
- Pap smear
This is one test that has cut the death rate of cervical cancer by more than half. Cervical cancer affects the cervical cells in the lower body and can lead to death if not detected and move to the later stages.
A Pap smear usually involves a swab of the cervical cells. If any abnormality is detected in the Pap smear then a colposcopy is called for to examine your vagina. If the colposcopy also raises any abnormalities then a biopsy is a must have.
- Mole screening
A lot of us have moles; some of them from birth while the others grow subsequently. After breast cancer, skin cancer is one that is most common. Melanoma is one that is deadly and can cause death if not detected early.
By the time you hit 30 you should visit a dermatologist annually to get your skin examined and also check freckles, moles and other growths on the skin. Any unusual looking spots or growths are to be further examined by sending their tissue samples for testing.
- Lipid Profile
A lipid profile is taken to determine the cholesterol levels in the body. One of the easiest ways to figure out a heart problem is to check pressure levels and cholesterol levels. You should start screening yourself with a comprehensive lipid profile at the age of 20 onwards, especially if you have a family history of heart disease.
- Heart health test
Most of the women who die of heart disease usually don’t show any outward symptoms of the disease, it becomes very important to screen yourself for cardiac issues.
If you have a history of hypertension, blood pressure or heart disease then it might be a good idea to do a routine heart health checkup every few months. If there are any unusual murmurs or elevated pressure rates, your doctor might ask you to do an ECG and a stress test to evaluate the functioning of your heart.
So find out if you are in good health by taking periodic checks.
Written by: Rasha Ashraf