Over time, health issues can start to pile up. If you don’t keep tabs on your health, it can be easy to fall behind and wind up in an unhealthy or even dangerous situation. Find out which health issues you might have been neglecting.
We tend to think of high blood pressure and heart disease as a man’s issue, but heart disease is also the No. 1 killer of women in the U.S. The problem is that blood pressure is a silent disease that only shows itself when it destroys other organs. Fortunately, measuring your blood pressure is easy to do and should be easy to slot into your doctor’s appointment. If you don’t know what your blood pressure is or haven’t had it tested in the last year, it’s time to make an appointment to have it checked.
Sitting doesn’t sound like a health issue, until you consider how much time you spend doing it. Most Americans spend more than a third of their entire day sitting. Between watching TV, driving to and from work, and sitting behind a desk, it’s easy for the time to add up. Sitting all day puts you at risk for a variety of health conditions and may even increase your risk of death. Try walking to periodically break up long periods of sitting.
Unlike hunger, dehydration can sneak up on you. During the hotter months, your body loses more fluid than it did in the winter and you can end up low on water if you don’t compensate. Even during the colder months, it can be easy to down a warm cup of coffee with breakfast and forget the fluids for the rest of the day. Over time, dehydration can cause problems for your kidneys, make you feel fatigued, and give you headaches. Severe dehydration is a medical emergency. Keep an eye on the color of your urine and make sure it’s a light yellow.
Colon cancer is the third leading cause of cancer death in women, but many people put off their colonoscopy because it seems like a hassle. Colon cancer is mostly preventable, but you have to get screened to identify it early. Fortunately, there are several options for screening, only one of which is a colonoscopy. If you’ve been putting off getting checked, talk to your doctor about what your other options might be. Doing so could save your life.
Depression affects almost 20 million Americans each year, but many of them go undiagnosed. That’s because many people write off their symptoms, not realizing they have a problem that could be effectively addressed. Depression can cause trouble concentrating, fatigue, sleep changes, appetite changes and a variety of other symptoms on top of the typical sadness you might expect. While depression can be disabling, there is treatment. A combination of medication and therapy has been shown to relieve depression in many people who suffer with it. If you think you might be depressed, talk to your doctor. He or she can assess you and discuss how to address your symptoms.