A health check is a routine examination of your present state of health, often carried out by your GP. As we grow old we become prone to many infections and diseases and every stage of life demands different set of health checks.
Importance of the health checks?
The purpose of a health check is to help find and cure the illness before it appears. Based on your family history and your current health status the doctor might be able detect some problems at an early stage, which can timely cure the problems.
What can a health check consist of?
- Review of your medical history and examining your health issues
- To perform the routine medical tests
- Follow up of any diseased condition
- Doctor can provide counseling on any new diseased condition
A wide range of health checks recommended at different stages of life.
Health checks for planning pregnancy:
Health checks can be performed three months prior to the pregnancy and this is known as the preconception period.
Here is a list of some tests which one can perform before getting pregnant:
Performed by: GP or gynecologist
Need for the test: Currently, Pap test screening is usually advised in women from age 18 or 2 years after first having sexual intercourse. This test can detect the cancer caused by the virus known as human pappiloma virus.
Performed by: Dentist
Need for the test-Oral cavity is the gateway to our body. A poor dental hygiene can even cause heart diseases. A regular dental check up is vital to maintain a good dental health. Dentist may prescribe filling the carious tooth or may recommend a root canal procedure in case of badly carious tooth.
Checking the immunization status:
Who performs: GP and pathology laboratory
Why: A simple blood test can reveal whether you have immunity to infections that may be harmful to a pregnancy such as rubella, varicella (chicken pox) and influenza.
General health and blood tests
Carried out by: Arranged by your GP
Why: You may need blood tests to check for thyroid function, blood glucose levels or for sexually transmitted infections (STIs). You may also need a full blood count to check your iron and folate levels. Your doctor can help you determine what checks are suitable for you.
Several different health checks may be available to you during pregnancy, including abdominal palpitations, ultrasounds, maternal serum screening test (MSS) and amniocentesis just to name a few. Check with your doctor or gynecologist on which tests you might need.
Health checks for newborns and children
Baby and child health checks
Carried out by: Pediatrician performs health checks in children and infants to assess the rate of growth, height gain and if the child is infection free.
Which health checks are required in 20s and 30s?
Some tests which doctors recommend during time include:
- Measuring the Blood pressure
- Cholesterol and glucose levels
- Pap tests and pelvic exams
- Dental check and cleaning
- Sexually transmitted infections (STI) screenings
- Testes examination
- Healthy weight assessments
Health checks required in 40s
As we reach 40s body becomes less active to fight against infections. Also, the metabolic rate declines. To ensure a healthy functioning of the body, doctor may recommend below tests:
- Eye check
- Breast checks.
- Health assessment for people with a high risk of developing type 2 diabetes
- Prostate check
Health checkups recommended after 50s and later on
As you move into your 50s, regular preventive health checks with your GP become even more important. Make sure to continue with the regular checks you were getting in previous years including eye checks, blood pressure, cholesterol and glucose levels.
After 50s doctors prescribe below mentioned tests:
- Breast check and mammogram
- Bone density scan
- Faecal occult blood test (FOBT)- To test the bowel cancer
- Hearing assessment