Checklist for women’s health checkup

The body of a woman undergoes a lot of hormonal changes throughout life, right from the start of puberty to menopause.

Digital Health [Illustrative] (photo credit: ING IMAGE/ASAP)
Digital Health [Illustrative]
(photo credit: ING IMAGE/ASAP)
When it comes to taking care of their health women seem to be least bothered. They are either occupied in their work or in looking after their families. The body of a woman undergoes a lot of hormonal changes throughout life, right from the start of puberty to menopause. Women also face a lot of health-related issues during and after pregnancy. Therefore, it becomes extremely important for women to keep a check on their health status. Undergoing regular preventive health checkups can be one of the easiest ways to keep a track on one’s health and detect any underlying issues even before they become symptomatic.
Mentioned below is a checklist of all the preventive health checkups that a woman must undergo to ensure a healthy body –
Breast Health Checkup - Women are more prone to developing breast cancer after the age of 30. It has been observed that one in every 8 women suffers from this condition. Undergoing, regular mammography can help women to detect the condition even before it becomes symptomatic. In this test, the breasts are compressed between the plates so that an X-Ray image can be easily captured. It is suggested that women above the age of 45 should have a mammogram every two years.
Cervical Health Checkup - Cervical cancer is the cancer of the cervix (lower part of the uterus in females). A Pap smear test is conducted to detect the presence of cancer cells in the cervix. In this test, the doctor may use a speculum to widen the vaginal opening and take some cells from the cervix with the help of a small brush. The cells are then examined under a microscope to detect the onset of cancer. It is recommended that women above the age of 21 should get a Pap smear test at least once in five years.
Bone Checkup - Bone density tends to decrease after the age of 30 in women. Therefore, they are advised to get regular screening for osteoporosis. To screen the bone density the patients will have to undergo a DEXA scan. During this test, the patient may have to lie on a table while a low-intensity x-ray machine captures the images of your bones.
Oral Health Checkup – Women must visit a dentist to get a regular oral health checkup. During this checkup, the dentist may inspect teeth and the surrounding tissues of the oral cavity, salivary glands and ducts, surfaces of the tongue and the lymph nodes of the neck. This checkup allows the dentist to detect and diagnose early signs of dental problems such as periodontal diseases, tooth decay, tooth cavity etc. The complete dental checkup may also contain a complete series of X-Ray.
Eye Health Checkup – If a woman already has vision problems, she must visit an ophthalmologist in the least every six months to ensure that no correction in glasses or lenses is required. Also, if a woman is already suffering from diabetes, eye checkups are must as diabetes tends to affect the eye and vision to a great extent.
Skin Health Checkup – It is important for women to physically examine their skin such as any change in existing moles or appearance of new moles. This is important because these can be the early signs of skin cancer. Also, if skin cancer runs in a person’s family history she may be more prone to developing the condition. A woman must visit a dermatologist if any changes in the skin are noticed.
Diabetes Health Checkup – Right from the age of 40, women must undergo a blood glucose test every three years to check for prediabetes or diabetes. If a woman is obese or has a family history of diabetes she must get screened early. During this test, the person may have to fast for at least 8 hours after which the blood samples will be collected. The lab technician will then check the level of glucose in the blood to determine if the level exceeds the normal. 
Test for Sexually Transmitted Diseases
– If the woman falls in the age group of 13 – 64 years, she must get tested for HIV at least once in a year as a part of a preventive health checkup. Women who are at low risk of HIV infection must get tested at least once in every year. A pregnant woman must be screened for HIV at the start of pregnancy so that if the mother is infected the child can be saved. Also, if a woman is under 25 and sexually active she must be screened for chlamydia and gonorrhoea.
Blood Pressure Screening
The women must keep a check on their blood pressure to ensure that they are not suffering from a heart-related ailment. Also, women who have a family history of hypertension or blood pressure related issues must get themselves regularly checked. 
2. Cholesterol Check
Cholesterol levels are the best way to detect if a woman is at risk of developing heart-related conditions or stroke. If a female is 20 or older, she must get her cholesterol levels measured at least once every five years.  A person’s total cholesterol levels should ideally not more than 200 milligrams per deciliter (mg/dl). If a woman is at risk of developing heart disease or stroke, make she must regularly consult her doctor and get herself checked.
Other screening tests
Women must ask their doctor about colon cancer and screening if they have a family history of such kind of problem.
The women must also get screened for colon cancer if they have had an inflammatory bowel disease or polyps recently or in the past.
Preventive health checkups are important to keep abreast of your health conditions and detect diseases even before the symptoms start to appear. The above-mentioned checklist comprises of preventive health checkups that must be regularly taken by the females to ensure their optimum health. The patients undergoing health checkups are advised to share their complete medical history with the doctor so that proper diagnosis can be conducted.