Women's Health Awareness
Alright, alright, alright! Another week here but this month (Mayyyy) is known as Women’s Health & Mental Health Awareness month. It’s only fitting we talk about some of the things that our job revolves around and that’s preventative medicine. We love preventative medicine period from anti aging to diseases. In this episode we briefly go over all the basic preventative services for women of all age groups and add in a few general things everyone should be doing no matter what sex you are.
So screening guidelines are super important and a big part of our practice. If you haven't listened to episode CLICK HERE then come back for some shownotes. Let's get right into some of the most applicable ones on this pod:
Screening should begin at age 50 with a mammogram and continue every other year until 74
Exceptions (may need earlier screening): positive family history, carriers of the BRCA gene, or findings of a new lump
If you are younger than 35 you will likely need both an ultrasound and a mammogram (due to the increased density of the breasts)
Screening begins at age 21 (age of onset of sexual activity does not matter here)
Between 21-30 years of age a pap smear is done every three years (given your pap is normal)
If you are greater than 30 you have the option of a pap smear every 3 years (as above) or a pap smear plus HPV co-testing every 5 years
Don't forget about the HPV vaccine! It is a quadrivalent vaccine that you take at 0, 2 and 6 months (3 doses total) that covers you against the most common strains known to cause genital warts and cervical cancer
Folic acid daily supplements is major in the prenatal world and is crucial for women that are planning on becoming pregnant
Recommended dosage is 0.4 to 0.8 mg/day
If you're a new mom or planning on being a mom, breastfeeding is key!
It helps with bonding as well as, overall health for you and your baby
Breastfeeding has been shown to reduce risk of ovarian and breast cancer
It has also been shown to reduce the risk of infections in the newborn
Huge issue right now especially in the Western World
If you suffer from diabetes proper blood sugar checks are crucial (to know if you are or aren't well controlled and important for treatment adjustments as well as, effectiveness)
Diet and Exercise
Annual cholesterol monitoring
Blood pressure monitoring as part of your regular checkup and at home personal checks if you suffer from elevated blood pressure or hypertension
Screening starting at age 50 with a colonoscopy
Exceptions: family history, multiple polyps, genetic predisposition
Surveillance is typically done every 10 years unless specific polyps are found that would require you to return sooner
Note: there are other screening methods at this time however, none have been determined as effective. These options include FIT testing, flexible sigmoidoscopy and Cologuard (DNA) testing. Surveillance times differ with these tests.
Screening for depression and mental health in general is one of the most important things especially in today's environment
Screening yourself as well as, by your physician allows for issues to be caught early on and managed sooner!
Should be conducted for all sexually active women
Screening for chlamydia is recommended for women age 24 or younger
It is also recommended for older age groups with risk factors for STDs
PRACTICE SAFE SEX
Screening for osteoporosis starting at age 65 via a DEXA (bone) scan
Make sure to have adequate calcium and vitamin D intake
Sun exposure is key for Vitamin D (health doses of course)
Exercise to keep your bones strong
Kids... DRINK YOUR MILK.
NO BRAINER: DON'T SMOKE
Screening with low dose CT scans is an option for older adults with an extensive smoking history
The list goes on and on but the moral of the story is that this is the typical framework for annual screening. Skin is another important topic so annual skin checks especially in people with fair skin is important. Look at your skin and assess for any changes.
Go to your doctor
Be in charge of your health
Get an annual physical
Get genetic testing (if feasible)
Tell your doctor about your personal and family history
Help us, Help YOU
Visit Women's Health to find the most up to date information of what you should do for your health
That's all for this week, don't forget to leave us feedback, rate, review, subscribe and send in your questions so we can continue to improve as well as, provide you high quality content.
Disclaimer: The Content on our podcast/website is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website.