Healthcare for women includes the entire spectrum of their life. That brings unique health concerns affecting only women. And that’s not the end, there are diseases that affect women differently and may require a distinct diagnosis.
Think of preventive healthcare as an investment. If you put in the time and effort now, it will pay you in a longer lifespan and an improved quality of life.
When it comes to your health, you can never be too careful about caring for your wellbeing Therefore, taking preventive measures to ward off any potential disease can be the best investment for your health.
For women, this would mean scheduling regular health check-ups, going for routine screening tests for breast and cervical cancer as well as meeting your healthcare providers on a regular basis.
Why is preventive healthcare important for women?
On average, Australian women experience different health outcomes than Australian men. Australian women tend to have a higher life expectancy, but also more likely to suffer from multiple chronic conditions at the same time.
While both women and men suffer from common diseases, certain diseases affect them differently.
For example, women suffer from exclusive health concerns, such as breast cancer, cervical cancer, menopause and pregnancy. In the same way, heart disease affects both men and women, however women are more likely to die following their first heart attack.
Australian women are more likely to suffer from multiple chronic medical conditions.
At Territory Medical Group, we believe being aware of your medical needs is the best preventive healthcare measure. In doing so, we have come up with a list of 5 essential preventive screenings that all women must be aware of.
The Essential Preventive Healthcare Screenings for Women
Breast cancer is the most commonly diagnosed cancer in Australian women, causing the second most cancer-causing death in women after lung cancer. Therefore any woman with risk factors should be undergoing regular breast cancer screening tests or mammograms.
Mammograms won’t prevent breast cancer, but they can save lives by detecting cancer as early as possible.
Although it is important for women across all age groups to know the normal look and feel of their breasts, a mammogram test is recommended for women aged between 50 to 74 years.
If you have any concern about mammograms, their risks and benefits, talk to our doctors.
Cervical Cancer Screening
Every year, there are about 900 new cases of cervical cancer found in Australian women.
Although there are no whole slew of cases, cervical cancer is mostly caused due to HPV, which comes with no symptoms. So, you won’t know about it unless you have undergone a regular cervical cancer screening test.
Whether you have been vaccinated for HPV or not, if you’re aged between 25 to 74 years, it’s recommended to have regular cervical cancer screening tests.
Reproductive and Sexual Health screenings
Good reproductive and sexual health is central for a woman to make choices about her life, including when or whether to have children.
It is not just about physical wellbeing- it includes having a healthy relationship, access to medical help and information, diet, nutrition, and access to effective contraception.
For an up-to-date sexual and reproductive wellbeing for women, vaccination against HPV, cervical cancer screening test, and screening for sexually transmissible diseases is essential.
Blood Pressure Screening
Even when you’re outwardly fit, getting your blood pressure checked every two years is a good practice. You might have a blood pressure test as a part of a routine doctor’s appointment or screening for other diseases including hypertension.
If a recurring unsafe blood pressure level is detected, you might be advised for more frequent tests. If you leave it unchecked, heightened blood pressure puts you at higher risk for cardiovascular disease, stroke, heart attack, hypertension, and other medical conditions.
Gestational Diabetes Screening
Gestational Diabetes is diagnosed first time during pregnancy. With its impact on how your cells use glucose, it can also affect pregnancy and a baby’s health. The good thing with Gestational Diabetes is that it usually returns to normal levels after delivery.
However, once you have had this, you’re at a higher risk of getting Type 2 Diabetes, which is why you should get tested more often.
A screening test is recommended for every woman during her 24th and 28th weeks of pregnancy.