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Disease Prevention

This page on Be-Health-Smart.com is about Disease Prevention and Health. It covers topics from the Center for Disease Control and Prevention as well as many general Health and Desease Prevention related topics. Proactive disease prevention is one of the best ways of remaining healthy throughout your life.

Health Tips and Disease Prevention Guidelines

Disease prevention is about taking control of your health. Disease prevention is a tool both you and your doctor can use. It is in your power to eliminate unhealthy lifestyle choices like smoking, excessive alcohol drinking and over-consumption of foods that are high in saturated fat and cholesterol. Replace your bad habits with smart health choices; which include; a nutritious diet, fitness and regular medical checkups. Regularly inspect your body for changes that could be warning signs; like a lump on your breast or a mole whose appearance has changed.

Early detection of health problems can be life extending. If your physician finds that you have high LDL cholesterol and are overweight; you can work on lowering your cholesterol and losing weight before you run the risk of having a heart attack. By having regular prevention screening for cancer your doctor may find the cancer, before it has spread; making it easier to treat and extending your survival rate. Make time for prevention counseling and screening with your doctor for overall health and well-being.


Health Tips And Prevention Guidelines

  • Get a general physical exam every 3 years (for women 18-40 years of age).
  • Have an annual physical exam if you are over 40 years of age.
  • Get a pelvic exam every year.
  • Perform proper dental hygiene and have regular checkups.
  • Have yearly eye exams. If you are over 40 years or have a family history of glaucoma, ask your optometrist or ophthalmologist to check your eye pressures. Elevated eye pressures are a symptom of glaucoma, a silent, but leading killer of eye sight.
  • Avoid excessive sun exposure and use proper sunscreens to prevent skin cancers. Meet with your doctor to have a skin cancer check: especially if you have a family history of skin cancer, experienced heavy exposure to sunlight, or exhibit signs of abnormal skin changes.
  • Take proper amounts of vitamins to prevent deficiency syndromes, heart attacks, osteoporosis, and other conditions.
  • Learn how to protect the health of your bones through osteoporosis prevention and treatment . Osteoporosis is a bone disorder that features a progressive loss of bone tissue and bone mass leading to weakening of the bones.
  • If you are sexually active you should be tested for sexually transmitted diseases and HIV every 6 to 12 months or as recommended by a doctor.
  • If you are sexually active and are not planning on having a baby, you will need to select a birth control method.
  • If you are planning on having a baby, consult with your doctor before you conceive. Many health precautions can be taken before you plan to conceive. See our healthy baby & mother & pregnancy planning articles.
  • If you are 40-60 years of age and have two or more of the following risk factors for heart disease; family history, smoking, high cholesterol, diabetes, or high blood pressure, you may benefit from screening for coronary artery disease.
  • Learn how to prevent a heart attack and atherosclerosis.
  • Find out ways to improve your blood cholesterol profile.
  • Learn heart healthy diet tips.
  • If you have multiple risk factors for a heart attack you may also be at risk for having a stroke.
  • Become aware of the diseases and health conditions that run in your family and discuss screening for these conditions with your physician. For more information, visit our family medical history guide to important topics.

Early detection is your best defense against cancer. Cancer warning signs include:

  • Changes in bowel or bladder habits
  • Sores that don't heal
  • Obvious changes in a mole or wart
  • Unusual bleeding or discharge
  • A new lump or thickening in a breast or elsewhere
  • Difficulty swallowing or frequent indigestion
  • A bothersome cough or hoarseness

Do not rely solely on these warning signs to detect cancer. Be sure to follow your doctor's recommendations for screening tests.

  • A Pap smear should be part of your routine preventative health maintenance, especially if sexually active. Pelvic exams are recommended for all women beginning at around age 18 to be continued regularly.
  • Learn and perform proper breast self examination monthly.
  • Learn how breast cancer may be prevented.
  • The American Cancer Society recommends that a woman should have a baseline mammogram between the ages of 35 and 40 years. Between 40 and 50 years of age mammograms are recommended every other year. After age 50, yearly mammograms are recommended.
  • Beginning at age 50, the American Cancer Society recommends three courses of action that the patient and physician can choose for colon cancer screening.
  • Annual fecal occult blood tests, together with a flexible sigmoidoscopy and digital rectal examination every 5 years; OR
  • Colonoscopy with digital rectal examination every 10 years; OR
  • Double contrast barium enema with digital rectal examination every 5-10 years.
  • Stop cigarette smoking and prevent lung cancer and COPD.
  • Curtail excess alcohol consumption.
  • Exercise regularly to lose excess weight and maintain overall health and well-being.
  • Know your blood cholesterol and your blood pressure levels.
  • Work with you doctor to optimally control diabetes mellitus, high blood pressure, or abnormally high LDL cholesterol or low HDL cholesterol.
  • Discuss immunizations for hepatitis A and hepatitis B with your doctor.
  • For prior drug users, discuss screening for hepatitis C with your doctor. Proper treatment for hepatitis C can help prevent liver cirrhosis and liver cancer.
  • For people who have received blood transfusions, especially before 1986, discuss screening for hepatitis C with your doctor.
  • Discuss screening for blood iron level with our doctor if you have family members with liver disease due to a condition called hemochromatosis.
  • Practice poison prevention as part of routine life preserving measures.
  • Feeling depressed with low self esteem and difficulty coping with life situations? Remember, depression is a common yet treatable illness.
  • If you are 65-75 years old, you should have your hearing routinely checked.
  • Drink 8 glasses of water a day for overall health and to prevent dehydration. Dehydration can be dangerous in the elderly, especially in summertime.
  • Loud snoring can be a sign of sleep apnea that can cause high blood pressure, daytime fatigue and even depression.
  • Check out our First Aid tips.
  • Manage your stress.
  • Healthy eating is an important part of disease prevention. Choose a nutritionally balanced diet which is low in salt, low in fat, low in saturated fat and low cholesterol.
  • The beneficial effects of regular aerobic exercise on heart disease, stroke, and blood cholesterol levels have been well documented. New research studies show that even walking reduces your risk of dying from a chronic disease.
  • Wash your hands to reduce the spread of germs.

 

 

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