As an adult, the health screenings that you should have depends largely on age, although it is recommended that certain screenings, including blood pressure and weight, are done annually regardless of how old you are. However, people of different ages will need different screenings. Additionally, another factor is your sex.
The following are some of the screenings that are recommended for women ages 18 through 39. They include cholesterol screenings as well as specific screenings such as mammograms.
Cholesterol: It is recommended that cholesterol testing is performed on women every 5 years their 20s and then annually after age 35. If your cholesterol levels are abnormal then your doctor may recommend that you have cholesterol testing done more often.
Skin cancer screening: Most doctors suggest that both men and women should have yearly skin checks done to check for suspicious skin lesions or moles.
Breast exam: It is recommended that this should be done every year to screen for breast lumps.
Pelvic exam: It is recommended that pelvic exams should be done every year.
Pap smear: It is recommended that women aged 21 and up should have pap smears every 3 years.
Blood pressure check: Blood pressure screenings are recommended every 2 years.
After age 40, women should continue to have the above health screenings in addition to the below:
- Breast exam & mammograms: After age 40, your doctor will probably recommend that you start to have yearly mammograms to screen for breast cancer. If you are at a higher risk for breast cancer due to family history or other medical conditions then you may want to start having mammograms at an earlier age.
- Blood glucose levels: This will screen for diabetes.
- Ovarian cancer screening: It is recommended that this is done every 3 years for post-menopausal women.
After age 50, it is recommended that women begin to have colonoscopies to screen for colorectal cancer and pre-cancerous polyps.
Make sure to ask your doctor about which health screenings you need.
Find out the health screenings that men should have.