When was the last time you visited the doctor? As we age, our minds and bodies change. Because of this, a regular doctor’s check-up is a little more full on as we get older. There are some tests that we need to have to ensure our good health. These are six of the most important medical exams you should be having. Which ones have you had? How long ago?
Thyroid tests are important as issues may lead to weight gain, hormone imbalances and decreasing energy levels. Ageing is one of the factors that can contribute to an inefficient, slow thyroid. When your T hormone (the hormone produced by the thyroid) is low, you will usually require medications to boost the hormone production. There is a range of medications and alternative therapies that you can use to rebalance your thyroid. It is recommended that you have a thyroid test every five years.
Colonoscopy and Rectal Exams
The dreaded colonoscopy is something that we all try not to think about. But unfortunately, it is one of the most important tests to have as you get older. A colonoscopy and rectal exams checks for issues that range from enlarged prostates for men, to colon cancer to gastrointestinal problems. When you turn 60, doctors recommend you make it common practice to have both of these tests every year.
As you age, your cholesterol increases. Cholesterol is a group of healing cells that work to fight scarring and inflammation in your body. The more inflammation and scarring you have, the higher your cholesterol will be. There is a range of lifestyle factors that can contribute to increased cholesterol levels. Stress, an unhealthy diet and a lack of exercise all contribute to high cholesterol levels. You should have a cholesterol test every five years when you have reached 60. If you do have high cholesterol, your doctor will be likely to prescribe some cholesterol-lowering medication.
As you age, your blood pressure is likely to increase. This is due to some factors- both diet and lifestyle related. Blood pressure tests are easy to do, and you should have one every time you visit the doctor. If you have high blood pressure, there are home blood pressure test kits available to help you control your blood pressure at home.
Pap Smear and Pelvic Exam
Women here’s looking at you! These two tests are female specific and can help to catch any signs of cervical cancer. If you have a pap smear every three years, you will reduce the number of times you require specific cervical cancer screening. Pap smears are recommended every three years, and a cervical cancer screen should be done every five years.
Skin Cancer Test
Skin cancer is a silent killer. You may not spend much time in the sun now, but your beautiful beach holidays when you were growing up, before the days of sunscreen, are starting to take their toll on you. Anyone is at risk of skin cancer. If you have a large number of freckles or moles, you should have them checked regularly and tracked by your GP for changes which are indicative of cancer.
So, safeguard yourself against some of the diseases and conditions that target ageing people by taking these tests regularly. You want to give yourself the best chance of good health possible, so be preventative rather than reactive when it comes to your health.