Why is it necessary to get certain preventative health screenings? In order to live your healthiest life (and therefore enjoy life even more!) you need to make sure you stay healthy. Women make 80% of all healthcare decisions for their family. If the woman in the family takes care of herself then she will be better able to care for the rest of her family.

What type of preventive screenings should you get? Here’s some of the information from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Visit their website for more complete information.

Breast Cancer:
The number and timing of mammograms is based on your age, family history, overall health, and personal concerns. Talk with you healthcare provider to see if you should have one. The National Cancer Institute recommends that women age 40 and older should have a mammogram every 1 to 2 years.

Cervical Cancer:
Women ages 21 to 65 should have a Pap smear every 1 to 3 years. If you are over 65 and all recent Pap smears were normal, you do not need a Pap smear.

High Blood Pressure:
Beginning at age 18, you should have your blood pressure checked every 2 years. High blood pressure, which is 140/90, can cause stroke, heart attack, heart failure, kidney problems and eye problems.

Get your blood sugar tested, particularly if your blood pressure is higher than 135/80, if you take medication for high blood pressure, or if you are overweight. Diabetes can damage your heart, brain, eyes, kidneys, nerves, and other body parts. It is extremely important to be treated for diabetes.

You can download A Lifetime of Good Health – Your Guide to Staying Healthy from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office on Women’s Health.

Remember, it is up to you to take care of yourself.