As part of National Women’s Health Week, the second Monday in May is National Women’s Checkup Day.
Come on ladies, we should discuss with our health care professionals which of the tests are right for us, when we should have them, and how often.
Yearly well-woman visits are important and should include:
- discussions of your health habits
- family history
- setting health goals
- and scheduling or receiving screenings or necessary exams
Screening would include:
- blood pressure
- cervical cancer and others
We all need to make sure that we are continually working on developing healthy habits. These are habits that are going to make you feel good physically and mentally. It takes about sixty-six days to for a new habit to become automatic. Start today and you’ll have a new habit formed by the third week of June.
- Eat a healthy diet. Find the foods that are going to give you relief from your inflammation, help reduce stress and give you energy.
- Exercise. Choose an exercise that is the best for you, your age, your body and your autoimmune disorder.
- Get plenty of rest. It seems like one of the main symptoms many of us living with autoimmune disorders share is fatigue. We all need to take extra care of ourselves in this area. And don’t forget about your, “Self-Care Saturdays.”
- Stand up straight. We need to make sure we are keeping our backs straight when we stand and sit. Slouching is a no-no. I know as I get older, I’m feeling myself starting to slump and I’m working everyday to stand straighter.
- Drink water.
Why is Knowing Your Family’s History Important?
Risks for diseases such as asthma, diabetes, cancer, and heart disease can run in families. Everyone’s family history of disease is different. The key features of a family history that may increase risk are:
Diseases that occur at an earlier age than expected (10 to 20 years before most people get the disease)
Disease in more than one close relative
Disease that does not usually affect a certain gender (for example, breast cancer in a male)
Certain combinations of diseases within a family (for example, breast and ovarian cancer, or heart disease and diabetes)
If your family has one or more of these features, your family history may hold important clues about your risk for disease. People with a family history of disease may have the most to gain from lifestyle changes and screening tests. Read more.
Setting Goals with Your Doctor
If you are like me and you need someone to be accountable to when it comes to your health, your doctor may be a good accountability partner. Work with your doctor during your appointment to set S.M.A.R.T. goals with ending dates and follow-up appointments.
What are S.M.A.R.T goals?
Let’s use weightloss as a SMART goal.
- Specific – Lose 10 pounds in 6 months.
- Measurable – Weigh yourself each week to keep track of your success.
- Attainable – 10 pounds in 6 months should be easy to do.
- Relevant – You need to lose weight because you are borderline diabetic.
- Timely – Schedule an appointment with your doctor for your final weigh-in.
When you set your goals with your doctor, don’t work on too many things at one time. You can become overwhelmed and then the chance of you being successful at any of them diminishes.
Go over the benefits you will receive as you reach your goal for your health with your doctor. These benefits will help keep you motivated to keep moving forward.
For me, my goals I work on are with my dentist. She is the best! I have an appointment with her once a month to have one tooth worked on. I have so many cavities that it is easier for me take care of them one tooth at a time. This also give my dentist a chance to address any new issues that may develop.
Action Step: Schedule an appointment with your doctor for a wellness checkup.