As you grow out of your 20s into your 30s, and your 30s to your 40s, what are the health tests you should be aware of?
You feel healthy, you’re exercising, you’re eating better than you did a few months ago and your energy levels are great.
So, then, there’s no reason for you to check in with your doctor every year, right?
You couldn’t be more wrong. Even though things seem great on the surface doesn’t mean you should ignore doctor visits. You’re not a little kid anymore; you body changes with age and it’s essential to know what to look out for during that process.
In your 20s, you should have your first full physical exam. One of the most important exams at this age is you pap test. Starting at the age of 21, this test is the quickest way to determine signs of cervical cancer. Another important testing schedule in your 20s are STD tests. Some STDs do NOT show any symptoms, and if left untreated can lead to infertility and other health issues later in your life.
In your 30s, the tests that you did in your 20s are still important, but you need to consider several more tests. Getting a HPV test is crucial. Most sexually active women will get this infection at some point, and starting at the age of 30, you are more prone to infections.
When you enter your 40s, it’s important to know your numbers. Not just weight, blood pressure and heart rate, but your cholesterol levels, your blood sugar levels, hormone levels, etc. This is very important to know, especially if you have a family history of diabetes, heart disease and cancer.
In your 50s (if you haven’t already in your 40s), it's time to schedule a mammogram. You need to know your risks and your body. If you’ve noticed lumps or density in your breasts these are signs you should not ignore. Another test you should schedule is a colonoscopy. Colon cancer is the second leading killer in the U.S. among all cancers and adults 50 years and older run the highest risk.
Hosts Pam Peeke, MD, and Michelle King Robson share the essential health tests every woman needs at every age to ensure you’re living a healthy and happy lifestyle.