Use some of these tips to check your health at home and stay healthy. Read on for ideas on do-it-yourself and professional health checks…
When it comes to staying fit and healthy, we all know the basics – eat a varied diet rich in nutrients, take regular exercise and try to get between 6 and 9 hours sleep per night.
But to really keep your health in check, there are a number of things you can do at home to make sure any signs of illness of disease are picked up early. Don’t ignore a persistent problem – make an appointment with your doctor to get anything concerning you checked out, not least of all to ease your worry.
Try to incorporate some of these health check activities into your regular routine at home, to give you peace of mind from knowing your health is in tip-top condition.
Save your skin
Wearing sun protection and covering up can lower your risk of developing serious skin problems, but it still pays to be vigilant about any unusual changes in your skin, particularly with moles and freckles.
Research shows that skin cancer in the under 40s is on the rise and looking out for early warning signs could be key to beating the illness.
Visit your GP if you notice any of the following -
- New freckles or moles
- Change in colour of existing freckles or moles
- Change in texture of existing freckles or moles
- Change in shape of existing freckles or moles
- Changes in the skin anywhere on your body
- Itchy or bleeding moles
Keep an eye on your moles and freckles and don’t ignore any changes – early detection of skin cancer can significantly increase your chances of survival.
Stay abreast of any issues
The TV doctors from Channel 4 series Embarrassing Bodies have made an excellent video which demonstrates how you can check your breasts to detect early signs of breast cancer.
With statistics showing that 1 in 8 women will get breast cancer at some point in their lives, checking for unusual lumps at home may just save your life. Experts recommend building breast checking into your daily routine, perhaps in the shower or when you get dressed in the morning.
By becoming familiar with the shape and feel of your breasts, you’ll be able to detect any changes early on and – as always – if you are concerned about anything, make an appointment with your GP.
Pump some iron
And I don’t mean at the gym. Iron deficiency can cause all kinds of health problems and is actually more common than you may think, with 20 per cent of women and 3 per cent of men lacking in iron.
“It’s very common to be anemic and not be aware of it, because it comes on slowly and insidiously,” Doctor Lloyd P. Van Winkle from the University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio said on rd.com.
But Dr Winkle has a very nifty tip you can do in the comfort of your home to find out if you have an iron deficiency – simply spread your palm wide, and check the creases.
“No matter what your natural skin colour, unusual paleness of your palm creases, or of your gums and the inside of your eyelids, is a sign of reduced circulation in small blood vessels near the surface of your skin due to low iron.”
If you notice any of these symptoms, get yourself down to the doctor for a proper blood test to identify the problem.
Give yourself a health MOT
There’s nothing like a full health check-up to give you the peace of mind your body is completely healthy. Healthcare providers like Bupa can offer a health check-up which includes blood tests and checks for early signs of disease and a range of common medical conditions.
A health professional can assess the current state of your health and look at your lifestyle to see if you’re likely to be at risk of developing certain health issues in the future.
Take control of your health, by trying out some of these tips at home, or book yourself in for a thorough health check-up.
How do you check your health regularly? Let us know in the comment section below!