Let’s face it, women are different from men! And, while there are a number of heath issues that affect both women and men equally, there are also some health issues that are specific to women. Here are some interesting facts from the National Institutes of Health regarding women’s health issues:
- Women are more likely to die following a heart attack than men
- Women are more likely to show signs of depression and anxiety than men
- The effects of sexually transmitted diseases can be more serious in women
- Osteoarthritis affects more women than men
- Women are more likely to have urinary tract problems
So what can we do as women to protect our long-term health and mitigate our risk for certain diseases and health problems? The first thing we can do it to live a healthy and balanced life. Sounds easier than it actually is… right? That involves eating a healthy, well-balanced diet, getting an adequate amount of exercise, getting the proper amount of rest and managing stress.
The second thing we can do is to visit our doctor for regular checkups and screenings. Your doctor can let you know if you are at risk for heart disease by monitoring your weight, your cholesterol, your blood pressure, your blood glucose and more. He or she can then recommend an appropriate treatment plan to decrease your risk for heart disease. You annual checkup is also a great time to talk to your doctor about stress and to let him/her know if you are experiencing depression or anxiety. You can also discuss your sexual habits with your doctor and if needed, he or she can conduct testing to screen for STDs.
As women, we have a responsibility to take good care of ourselves. Many of us are caring for children or elderly relatives in addition to caring for ourselves. This makes it even more important for us to stay in good physical and mental health. Talk to your doctor today about ways you can protect your long-term health and increase your chances of living a long and healthy life.