Updated: Jan 8
The world is tough to survive and so is a woman. Whether she is a working mother or a home maker she has tons of tasks and responsibilities to do. But one thing that should not be forgotten amidst all these is a woman's health. A healthy woman makes a healthy and happy home. Here’s a quick Agewise guide for all women. Use it as a health card for all age woman. Adolescent and teenage girls The most important period for future psychological and physical development. Also the most challenging one for parents.
Anemia - It is very common in this age. Heavy periods or improper food habits can be the cause. It can cause lethargy, shortness of breath, concentration issues, hairfall etc. Treat the cause and iron tablrlets to be started as advised by doctor. Menstrual problems - proper counseling and check up for heavy bleeding and irregular periods should be done to address any problems like PCOD at early age. Malnutrition - Healthy food habits should be emphasized in this growing age Weight control - All obesity related problems in future can be prevented by being alert at this very age. Sexually transmitted diseases information and prevention - Sex education is must. Vaccination - Cervical cancer vaccination and rubella vaccination if not given in childhood should be given. Mental health screening - Depression is not uncommon in this age. Parents should be observant about any behavioral issues which suggest mental health problem. Woman in 20's
This is the age for career development and marriage planning for most women. Important life decisions and future challenges can compromise overall health in this phase
Premarital counseling - It includes everything from proper counseling, communication with parents, reading books on relationship, sex education, marriage readiness etc. Contraception or birth control - Various methods are available and all are safe. Barrier methods like condoms, oral pills, Iucd like copper T are available. Choose a best one suitable to you after discussing with your doctor. Spacing between kids and avoiding consequences from unwanted pregnancy is very important for a woman's overall health. Vaccination - cervical cancer vaccination should be taken Sexually transmitted diseases information and prevention and treatment Preconceptional counseling - Staring folic acid before planning, impact of any existing health issues, basic blood tests and many more things should be discussed with your doctor. Subfertility - The couples who are staying together and have regular unprotected sexual intercourse for a year and unable to conceive can consult a doctor Relationship counseling should be done when required.
Pregnancy care - Good antenatal care Woman in 30's
Physical activity and good mental health is very important in this phase. Woman's health can be easily forgotten amidst multiple responsibilities.
Cervical cancer screening - Pap smear test should be done every 3 years for women between 30 to 65 years. This screening should continue after vaccination also. Contraception as discussed above should be used effectively. Breast self examination - All women after 25 years should examine their breast every month and report any changes to their doctor. Subfertility - Fertility counseling should be done if required. Woman in 40's
Late 40's is peimenopausal period for many women. You should be more vigilant about general health, activity, cancer screening.
Well woman visits once a year - include general check up, breast examination, routine blood tests. Cervical cancer screening - Pap smear every 3 years as already cited Breast self examination should continue as explained. Woman in 50's
Importance of maintaining general health and good physical activity cannot be underestimated in this phase.
Breast cancer screening - Mammogram every 2 yearly starting from 45-50 years to 70 years. It should be done one yearly for high risk woman. General health check up - diabetes, high blood pressure, osteoporosis, heart disease etc should be checked with a doctor. Menopausal symptoms - Education about menopausal symptoms, treatment of the same, to stress the importance of taking calcium and physical activity is important.
How to do Breast self examination
Breast cancer awareness
Disclaimer - These are the views of a qualified doctor and author. These are general suggestions and do not replace actual check up by a doctor. Any resemblance to anybody is coincidental.
Author information - Dr Harita N Kothia, Obstetrician and gynecologist, Mumbai.
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