If you want to stay healthy as you age, you’ll want to be checked for certain health conditions that are known to affect people who are over the age of 50. Getting screened for these health problems can help identify underlying issues that can be treated more successfully in their earlier stages.
Here are four conditions to check for when you turn 50.
The density, or tissue that’s in your bones, can diminish as you get older and lead to problems like osteoporosis. Bone loss causes bones to become weaker and more prone to fractures. In men, bone loss is often caused by lower testosterone levels that result from getting older. The decreased estrogen levels in older women can also lead to bone loss. If your doctor discovers that you have this condition, you may be prescribed medications such as calcitonin and bisphosphonates. Dietary changes can also help reverse bone loss.
Certain cancers are seen in higher numbers among people older than 50. Most doctors recommend people who are at average risk for colon cancer start getting screenings at age 50 and once every ten years after that. Breast and prostate cancer risks also increase with age, and these cancers are highly curable when treated in their early stages. Women can receive annual mammograms to check for breast cancer while men can visit a prostate cancer clinic
for screenings and treatment.
A condition known as insulin resistance syndrome is known to increase the chances of getting diabetes and heart disease. As WebMD
explains, insulin resistance occurs when your body doesn’t respond properly to the insulin that’s produced, which can raise your blood sugar to unhealthy levels. Blood tests are usually effective in diagnosing the condition. Medications that are often prescribed to treat insulin resistance include metformin, biguanides and thiazolidinediones. Exercising regularly and maintaining a healthy body weight and diet can also help safeguard your health better if you have the condition.
Also known as having high blood pressure, hypertension occurs when blood pressure readings are greater than 120/80. Your doctor can perform a blood pressure check by using a cuff that squeezes around your arm to record your readings. Blood pressure machines can also be purchased in store for home use. Along with aging, hypertension can develop from being overweight, smoking and eating foods with high sodium content. The best ways to treat hypertension include low-salt diets, regular exercise and medications such as beta blockers or diuretics.
You can take better control as you age by getting the right tests for health conditions. Regular screenings may help you live well beyond 50 with a better quality of life.