National Women’s Checkup Day is an important reminder for women to prioritize their health by getting regular checkups and screenings. Women face unique health challenges throughout their lives, and early detection and prevention can be crucial in maintaining overall wellness. Beginning as soon as your early 20s, experts recommend a number of routine tests and examinations to stay on top of female health. As National Women’s Checkup Day is approaching, let’s discuss some of the different types of checkups and screenings women should consider as they age.
Women’s Wellness in your 20s
Starting in their 20s, women should begin scheduling regular wellness visits with their healthcare provider. These visits can include a physical exam, blood pressure and cholesterol checks, and discussions about healthy habits and lifestyle choices. Women in their 20s should also have a clinical breast exam every one to three years to check for breast cancer. Starting at age 21, women should have a lipid-based pap smear every three years to screen for cervical cancer.
Women’s Wellness in your 30s
As women enter their 30s, it becomes even more important to stay on top of routine check-ups and screenings. Blood pressure tests should be conducted every three to five years in women with healthy ranges and low risk factors. A diabetes screening should be done at age 35 and every three years after if you have no risk factors for diabetes.
Women in this age group should have a lipid-based pap smear every three years and an HPV test every five years to screen for cervical cancer. They should also continue clinical breast exams every one to three years to help detect breast cancer early on, when it is most treatable.
Women’s Wellness in your 40s
Women in their 40s should continue to schedule annual wellness visits and have routine screens for diabetes and high blood pressure. Starting at age 45, cholesterol screenings should be done every five years in women with low risk of coronary heart disease. Women in their 40s should also consider getting a baseline colonoscopy, which can help detect colon cancer in its early stages.
The guidelines for breast cancer screenings are controversial. Many reputable health organizations recommend that women over 40 have a mammogram to screen for breast cancer every one to two years; others suggest waiting until your 50s to begin mammograms. Talk to your healthcare provider about which option is best for you.
Women’s Wellness in your 50s
Women in their 50s and beyond should continue to prioritize regular check-ups and screenings. In addition to annual wellness visits and mammograms, women in their 50s should be screened for colon cancer every five to ten years. Routine tests like pap smears, blood pressure checks, and cholesterol screens should continue through the golden years. Women in their 60s and beyond may also need to consider bone density testing to check for osteoporosis and other structural conditions.
It’s important to note that these recommendations are just general guidelines, and women should discuss their individual health needs and risk factors with their healthcare provider. Women with high risk factors for certain conditions may need to get screened more frequently or start screenings at an earlier age.
While Urgent Care of Fairhope doesn’t conduct these routine testing and exams, women’s health is at the heart of our business. From UTIs and gynecological problems to minor illnesses and injuries, our team can treat non-emergent issues as they arise to keep you in peak health. If you need convenient care close to home, visit our website to check current wait times and stop by our Fairhope walk-in clinic six days per week.