As December 2011 winds down to a close, it’s that time of year to start thinking of your New Year’s resolution. Every January 1st, millions of women watch the ball drop and vow to commit themselves to the success of at least one goal in their life.
Perhaps it’s about their health, or maybe their finances, some choose wellbeing, while others involve their family or friends. Whatever your choice, here are five resolutions you can make in addition to the "big one" you hope to maintain throughout the year.
1. Take care of yourself by making your health appointments. When was the last time you saw an eye doctor, dermatologist or dentist let alone had your yearly physical?
Most women’s health groups recommend your Pap smear every 1-3 years (depending on age and history), mammogram every 1-2 years at 40 years old and yearly at 50 years old. You need to see your dentist at least yearly (they would prefer a cleaning every 6 months) and a skin check by your dermatologist yearly as well. A colonoscopy starts at 50 years old (usually) and eye exams are typically every 1-2 years depending on your needs.
2. Do monthly breast exams just after your period ends. Some big advisory groups have said the self-breast exam is not effective however many women (your friends and family included) have probably found a lump on their own and brought it to the attention of their healthcare provider.
Many lumps are not cancer, such as a cyst or fibroadenoma, however breast cancer should not be ruled out. By doing a monthly breast exam, you will become familiar with the skin and tissue within your breasts and be aware of any changes immediately.
3. Don’t avoid your numbers. It is important to know your blood pressure (ideal is under 120/80), your cholesterol (ideal total cholesterol under 200, HDL above 40 and LDL under 100), your blood sugar (non diabetic under 100 but ideal under 90), your waist circumference (for women it should be under 35 inches and under 40 inches for a man) and your weight compared to your height. Go for the ideal numbers!
4. Drink your water. This seems like a no-brainer however many women report only having a glass or two per day but twice the amount of coffee, soda, or juice drinks.
Water keeps you hydrated, flushes your kidneys and is a healthier option as it doesn’t contain sugar, caffeine or artificial sweeteners. If you don’t like plain water then add lemon, lime, or cucumber slices to freshen the taste. Work yourself up to 8 cups per day and avoid the other junk your body doesn’t need.
5. Find your happy place. In this fast-paced, stressed out, always "plugged-in" world, where do you find the time to recharge your batteries? What makes you happy?
Take 2012 to discover what makes you smile and fulfills your soul. Putting yourself first (every once in awhile!) does not make you selfish, as you must remember to take care of you too.
1. Benefit of Mammograms Even Greater Than Thought. Web. December 28, 2011.
2. Colorectal Cancer Screening Guidelines. Web. December 28, 2011.
3. Regular Eye Exams Help Keep Vision Healthy. Web. December 28, 2011.
4. American Heart Association Website. Web. December 28, 2011.
5. Eat Your Water for Health, Sport Performance, and Weight Control. Web. December 28, 2011.
Reviewed December 28, 2011
by Michele Blacksberg RN
Edited by Jody Smith
Add a Comment2 Comments
I could not agree more. Dental care needs to be at the top of anyones list of they wish to stay healthy.
All excellent points though. Great List.
http://wwww.drperrone.comMay 21, 2012 - 10:31am
I am glad you mention dental care. It is so important and gets overlooked until there is a problem or because of lack of insurance.December 29, 2011 - 4:36pm