Quite simply, there are some health tests you should never skip. Taking an active role in your health is absolutely vital for decreasing the risk of health problems and for early detection should an issue arise. Talk to your doctor about your specific health needs and goals so you can get the tests that are important for you out of the way. Following is a list of health tests you should never skip, no matter how unpleasant they happen to be.
1. Blood Pressure
Your blood pressure is an indicator of so many health issues and is one of the most important health tests you should never skip. Fortunately, you don’t have to suffer through an appointment at the physician to get your numbers. Just go to any pharmacy department and test it yourself with the handy cuff provided. Note your reading and call your physician if it concerns you. If your blood pressure is off, dietary or exercise changes can often help.
Most women wait until middle age to start getting mammograms. That’s been the gold standard for decades, but if breast cancer runs in your family or you notice any changes to your chest, get in and have it checked out right away. I can assure you that it won’t be fun, but it’s so much better than waiting until the news is devastating.
3. Cholesterol Test
Heart disease is the number one killer in America, so knowing your cholesterol level is a must. Cholesterol levels indicate heart problems, so having yours tested regularly can help you and your doctor detect the potential for health issues that are very scary. After all, no one wants to consider what might happen if their heart stops working like it should. It’s even more important to have your cholesterol checked as often as your doctor recommends if heart disease runs in your family.
4. Cervical Cancer
That yearly trip to your gynecologist is never fun. I can attest to that. But, when I think about what could happen if I skip it, it’s pretty motivating to just get it over with. Your woman doctor tests for many things, one of which is cervical cancer. This sneaky type of cancer doesn’t always produce noticeable symptoms and they can be too far advanced by the time they do. So suck it up and get in there at least every 2 years.
5. Blood Sugar
Diabetes is a problem in America, but early detection can protect your health if you develop the condition. Once you hit 30 years of age, it’s important to get a diabetes test every couple of years. That way, if there are issues, your doctor can treat them before they lead to other problems. Luckily, you can test your blood sugar at home so you don’t have to go to the clinic unless there’s a weird result.
6. Body Mass Index
Weight is a sore subject for many people, but knowing where you stand can help you make healthy changes. Finding out just where you fall on the scale can be a powerful motivator for doing something about it. Your body mass index can indicate the potential for several health issues associated with being overweight. Fortunately, you can input your info into a website so the result is between you and your laptop.
7. Colon Cancer
A colonoscopy doesn’t rank anywhere on my list of fun things to do. While I’m not that close to 50 yet, more and more younger people are opting in to the test. Whether it’s because they have a family history of colon cancer or are simply worried about changes in bathroom habits, asking your doctor for this test if you feel it’s important is a good idea. It really can save your life.
Do you make it a habit to get to the doctor regularly? I try to fit it in, but let’s be honest, there are so many more enjoyable things to do. Will you schedule these tests?