Don’t take your health for granted, do health screening every year
Your health underpins everything you do in life, and unless you are well, the attainment of an optimal life may be a mirage. However, it is sad that millions of people around the globe neglect their health until they feel symptoms for diseases that they decide to go for medical checkup. It should be noted that with early detection and proper medical guidance, it is possible to keep most ailments at bay, including dreaded names such as cancer, stroke, diabetes, heart diseases and many others. This is the very essence of health screening, and why it should be done regularly, if not at least once every year.
What is health screening?
Health screening is not necessarily for people when they feel something is amiss with their systems. It is a proactive measure which ought to be taken by every health-conscious individual to ensure there are no symptoms of potential or imminent diseases. Screening helps to identify if an individual is at any particular risk of a condition or a disease. It is the only way to early detection, which would then be followed by proper treatment and management so that the severity of the outcomes is greatly reduced to evade any serious complications in the future.
As people advance in age, it becomes important to have regular screening. This is because advancement in age comes with increased risk factors for a myriad of life changing diseases – most of which can be prevented by early detection followed by proper treatment and management. It is highly recommended that individuals about the age of 40 years should go for health screening at least once every year. However, if you have risk factors such as family history for diabetes, stroke, or cardiovascular diseases, then you should consider consulting with your doctor about starting to have the screens at an earlier age.
Types of screens and the illnesses that may be detected
There are various kinds of health screening aimed at detecting different conditions and illnesses in the body. One may decide to go for a particular type or for all of them, but this will depend on the past screens they have had as well as if the doctor feels there is a reasonable justification for the person to undergo multiple screens.
Here is a brief look at some of the screens you may consider as well as the specific types of ailments they may help to detect-:
Urine and stool tests
Urine and stool tests are designed to check the presence of occult blood which may be used to suggest if there is a possibility of bleeding of any kind within the gastrointestinal or the urinary system. If the tests come up positive, but there is no clear cause, further tests may be recommended to pinpoint the real issue.
These include mammograms, x-rays and ultrasounds to check if there are any structural abnormalities and also the presence of stones or tumors within the various organs of the body. However, CT scans are recommended for these kinds of tests as a way of reducing significant exposure to radiation.
Some of the conditions that can be detected with radiological investigations include-:
- Mammograms and ultrasound for breast cancer in women above 40 years
- Ultrasound for uterine fibroid and ovarian cyst
- Scans to detect cancer, and liver cirrhosis
Blood tests are usually at the core of most health screenings, simply because life is in the blood and blood may contain potential indicators to suggest that something is wrong with the body. Here are some of the conditions that may be detected through blood tests-:
- The levels of cholesterol, sugar and uric acid – the levels of cholesterol in the body is way to know if you are healthy or you are at risk of stroke and heart diseases. Glucose or sugar, on the other hand is to help detect and maintain diabetes. The levels of uric acid can also be used to detect the onset of conditions such as arthritis.
- The levels of key nutrients – there are certain key nutrients in the body, who presence or lack, thereof, may be pointers to the onset for certain conditions. For example, vitamins B12 and D3, iron and folate are important for detecting conditions such as anemia or osteoporosis.
- Organ function failure – blood tests can also be used to detect organ function failure such as thyroid, liver and kidney. It can also be used in the case of diabetes – a condition known to affect the functioning of the kidney, especially amongst those who consume alcohol.
- Infections such as HIV/AIDS, syphilis and H. Pylori – an infection known to lead to cancer and stomach infections.
- Detect the possibility of cancer through various cancer markers present in the blood.
Treadmill ECG is a stress test used to determine if an individual has a heart disease. It is ideal for those who have family history of heart diseases, as well as for individuals with sedentary lifestyles wishing to embark on tough physical engagements such as strenuous exercises.
It is never too late
These are just but a brief of why it is important for every human to go for annual health screening and the potential illnesses that may be detected through the screens. Irrespective of your age, it is not too late to start going for the screens. Don’t wait for you to feel sick or until you are diagnosed with a condition that would have been prevented through screening for you to realize just how important regular health screening is for optimal life.