The most important health tests that every woman should know
If we want to ensure optimum health there are some tests that all women should have on a regular basis. Here are 5 more important health tests to schedule into your diary.
1. Dental Check-up
Our teeth are so important for our health, which is why you should visit your dentist every six months. The dental check-up involves cleaning and examining the teeth, whilst X-rays are also regularly taken to check for any changes or underlying issues.
2. Body Mass Index
Keeping an eye on your body mass index, or BMI, is a good way to check if you are the right weight for your height or if you are overweight or underweight. The BMI test is a screening for obesity, and this should be done regularly after the age of 18. Being obese makes you at risk of health conditions such as heart disease and diabetes.
3. Colon Cancer Screening
Screening for colon cancer should start at age 50. This can be done as a colonoscopy, in which a long tube examines the whole colon, or it can be undertaken as a sigmoidoscopy, which uses a lighted tube and camera for examining the lower colon only.
Another important test to be aware of is a test for chlamydia and other STIs. If you are sexually active you should get tested regularly. It is possible to test yourself for STIs from home using Home STI kits, which are available to purchase from specialist clinics such as https://www.greenwichsexualhealth.org/chlamydia_screening/.
4. Skin Checks
Women should examine their own skin at home at least once per month. Keep a lookout for new moles or changes to existing moles, which can be early signs of skin cancer. Check out this NHS guide to warning signs in moles. You can also use this to check your breasts for skin changes or lumps, which could signal potential breast cancer.
5. Blood Glucose Test
Blood glucose tests are used to check for diabetes and prediabetes. This should be undertaken every three years. A normal reading is 100 mg/dl or lower for a fasting plasma glucose level. If it is higher than this, it could indicate prediabetes. If the reading is higher than 126 mg/dl, this indicates diabetes. Obese people are at increased risk of diabetes, so you should get your blood glucose checked more often if you are obese.