Here are the top 6 tips for taking care of your health for women in their 40’s.
1. Book your health screenings
Just as you did in your thirties, continue with health screenings. These should be tailored to your own medical history. Screenings to consider starting or to continue:
- Pap smears – A screening test for cervical cancer that is carried out every 3-5 years.
- Sexually transmitted Infections (STI’s) – Important to consider if starting a new relationship or for those who have had multiple sexual partners over a short period of time
- Mammograms or breast exams – Guidelines state that you should do your first baseline screening mammogram at 40. Depending on your family history, you can do mammograms every year to every two years after that initial baseline.
2. Get ahead of Diabetes
The average age most women in the United States are diagnosed with Type 2 Diabetes is 55 years old. That might seem far away but now is the time to take steps to help prevent it. Type 2 diabetes is primarily a lifestyle condition, meaning that it is not inevitable. There are steps we can take in our day-to-day lives to keep that diagnosis at bay. Steps that include daily physical activity and eating well.
In addition, consider a screening test for diabetes. The test measures blood sugar levels and is generally offered to patients around the age of 45.
3. Spend time building bones
Once we pass our thirties, our bone mass and bone density begin to decline slowly. To help keep your bones healthy:
- Build physical activity into your daily life. Find a way to get 20 or 30 minutes of activity each day, for example riding a bike or briskly walking to work.
- Engage in weight-bearing exercises such as walking, dancing, low-impact aerobics or elliptical training machines
- Be sure to get vitamins into your diet like Calcium and Vitamin D.
4. Look out for the symptoms of Perimenopause
Menopause usually occurs around the age of fifty-two. However, perimenopause, the time during which the body makes the natural transition to menopause can start towards our late forties. Irregular periods, night sweats or sleep disturbances are just some of the symptoms that women may notice. If so, be sure to speak to your doctor about possible solutions to some of these issues, particularly if they start to affect your quality of life.
5. Lifestyle. Lifestyle. Lifestyle
This point can’t be understated. Many health conditions that creep up on us as we get older can be prevented by making a few lifestyle changes to our routine. Add some good habits and take away the bad. Make a commitment to start:
- Eating healthier foods.
- Getting regular exercise.
- Stopping smoking – to get help with this, speak to your doctor for advice.
- Cutting down on alcohol.
6. Book your well-woman exam
Lastly, don’t forget to book your yearly well-woman exam if you haven’t already. A well-woman exam is a great opportunity to speak to your doctor about any new concerns and get advice on what you can do to live a healthier life.