A yearly wellness routine is essential for overall health and well-being. Everyone knows the basics, such as eating a balanced diet and exercising regularly. Still, when it comes to preventive care, other things should be part of your yearly wellness routine. Read on to learn more.
Making sure you get an annual physical is key to maintaining optimal health. It’s a great way to identify potential problems before they become serious. During a checkup, your doctor will review your medical history, perform any necessary tests or screenings, and provide advice on how to best care for yourself in the future. Your doctor may also recommend certain vaccinations or other preventative measures depending on your age and risk factors. Here are the most important screenings you should have every year:
Blood pressure—Checking your blood pressure regularly can help you monitor any changes and ensure it stays within a healthy range. A normal blood pressure reading is below 120/80. Anything beyond that should be monitored and discussed with your doctor.
Cholesterol—High cholesterol is a leading cause of heart disease, so having it checked regularly can help you stay on top of any changes in your levels. A doctor will order you to get a lipid panel blood test to measure your levels.
Blood Sugar—If you’re at risk for diabetes, your doctor may order an oral glucose tolerance test or a fasting blood sugar test. Having these tests done regularly can help detect changes in glucose levels and alert your doctor to potential problems.
Pap smears (women)—A pap smear every three years can help detect changes in cervical cells that could indicate cancer or other issues.
Colonoscopy (age 50+)—This is recommended every ten years for people aged 50 and over. This is done to detect any changes in the colon that could indicate cancer or other issues, such as polyps.
Be sure to follow your doctor’s recommendations regarding your annual checkup. It’s also important to keep track of any changes in your health. If something doesn’t feel right, don’t wait for your next appointment—contact your doctor immediately.
Good dental care is also essential for overall health. Many diseases, such as gum disease, can be prevented with proper brushing and flossing techniques. Your dentist may also recommend other measures to protect your teeth and gums, such as sealants or fluoride treatments. Be sure to visit the dentist every six months for a checkup and general dentistry services such as the following:
Cleanings—Removing plaque build-up and other debris from your teeth helps prevent gum disease, tooth decay, and bad breath. It’s ideal to do this every six months.
Fluoride treatments—Fluoride helps strengthen enamel and makes it more resistant to acid and bacteria. It’s especially important for children, as their teeth are still developing.
X-rays—X-rays can reveal hidden cavities that may not be visible through a general checkup. They can also help identify signs of infection or other problems in the jawbone and surrounding areas.
Sealants—Sealants are thin plastic coatings painted onto teeth to protect them from decay. They’re especially beneficial for children, as their teeth need additional protection during their formative years.
Fillings—If you have cavities, fillings are necessary to repair the damage and prevent further decay. These are usually made of composite material and can be matched to the color of your teeth.
Extractions—Severely decayed teeth may need to be extracted and replaced with a bridge or implant. These are done to prevent further damage and maintain the integrity of your other teeth.
A well-rounded diet is essential for good health at any age. Eating nutrient-rich foods like fruits, vegetables, lean proteins, and whole grains can help keep your body running at its best. In addition to having regular meals throughout the day, it’s also important to make sure you’re getting enough vitamins and minerals to stay healthy. Taking supplements may be necessary if you cannot get the proper nutrients from food sources alone. However, supplements are not a replacement for eating healthy meals. Talk to your doctor or nutritionist about the best way to supplement your diet based on your needs and lifestyle.
If you feel stress is taking over your life, consider managing stress as part of your yearly wellness routine. Try activities such as yoga or meditation that can help reduce anxiety and clear your mind. Engage in enjoyable hobbies that distract from everyday pressures, or talk with friends or family about anything causing concern to gain perspective and find solutions together.
If you feel like you’re still struggling with anxiety despite your best efforts, don’t be afraid to seek professional help. Talking to a therapist or counselor can make all the difference in managing stress levels and living a more balanced life.
It’s important to prioritize your health and well-being—your annual wellness routine should be part of that. Regular checkups and preventive care can help you stay on top of any potential problems while eating a balanced diet and engaging in stress management activities will ensure you’re living your best life.