Prevention is almost always better than treatment when it comes to health issues. This is true for both mental and physical health. Women and men have different health risks and vulnerabilities. This is obviously true when it comes to reproductive health and breast health but there are other ways in which women differ. This means some generic health advice needs to be modified.
A recent article from the Mayo Clinic offered tips for preventing a range of risks to both physical and mental health. Most of their advice focuses on general advice on lifestyle.
Manage Environmental Risks
Lung damage is a particular risk for women, so smoking and air pollution put women at greater risk of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, or COPD. This means the old advice to stop smoking is even more important. Managing your exposure to air pollution, including second-hand smoke. Learn how to improve the indoor air quality in your home too. Monitor air quality and consider exercising indoors if the outdoor air quality is poor.
Motor vehicle accidents are a leading cause of death or serious injury for Americans. At a bare minimum, you should always wear a seatbelt, stay off the road if you are very tired or if the weather is very bad, and stay off the phone.
Mind Your Oral Hygiene
Take great care of your teeth and gums by brushing and flossing daily, and by getting regular exams. This preventative step wasn’t mentioned by Mayo but oral hygiene protects from some serious health problems. Most importantly, a regular oral cancer screening at the dentist’s office can detect that problem early, when treatment is most likely to work. Poor oral health also causes gum disease, tooth loss, and bone loss.
Get Recommended Health Checks
Do you know what health checks are recommended for a woman with your health history at your age? Breast exams are the best-known example. Learn to do a breast self-exam or get a regular check-up along with your physician. Regular health checks, such as pap smears and pelvic exams, at a women’s clinic Knoxville should be considered mandatory. Learn the health exams you should get and be sure to follow up with your medical provider to get checked as needed.
Maintain a Healthy Lifestyle
A healthy lifestyle is crucial to preventing a range of illnesses or reducing the risk. Diet, exercise, and stress management, getting the right medical checks at the right time is crucial insurance against problems. Integrate the best preventative steps into your life now:
- Get some exercise
- Limit your alcohol intake
- Manage your stress
- Lose weight, or gain weight, if needed
Look for ways to get more fruits, vegetables, and whole grains in your diet. If you don’t exercise, now is the time to take up walking, biking, yoga, or something more demanding. Speak with your medical provider before starting a serious exercise regimen.
Stress management has been an overlooked aspect of health, until recent years at least. Again, exercise is a key component of managing stress. Hobbies and social activities can help. Finally, quality sleep is important.