Five Health Issues Every Woman Should Know
By Olabode Aderemi Temitayo
Women have several health issues that concern them. This means females should pay more attention to their health as well as keep in touch with personal doctors to ascertain their family medical history as some ailments are hereditary.
Here are the top five health issues every woman should be aware of.
These include, coronary heart disease, heart attack, congestive heart failure, and congenital heart disease.
Symptoms: Pressure, heaviness, or pain in the chest, arm, or below the breastbone, discomfort radiating to the back, jaw, throat, or arm, indigestion, or choking feeling (may feel like heartburn), rapid or irregular heartbeats.
Prevention: Quit smoking, lower cholesterol by avoiding fatty food, control high blood pressure, maintain a healthy weight, and exercising.
Signs of breast cancer include a breast lump or an abnormal mammogram. There various stages of breast cancer are early curable breast cancer to metastatic breast cancer.
Symptoms: A lump in the breast or underarm that persists after your menstrual cycle, swelling in the armpit, pain or tenderness in the breast, unusual discharge from the nipple, a change in the nipple, such as a nipple retraction, dimpling, itching, a burning sensation, or ulceration.
Prevention: Keep healthy weight, be physically active, avoid alcohol, breastfeed if possible, avoid birth control pills esp. after the age of 35, avoid smoking, research family health history, women over the age of 20 – 39 should go for regular screening at least once in three years if, while those of age 40 or older should get mammogram and clinical breast exam every year.
Osteoporosis, also called Thinning Bones
Osteoporosis results in painful fractures. Some risk factors for thinning bones are aging, being female, low body weight, low sex hormones or menopause, smoking, and some medications.
A woman hardly knows she has thinning bones as it is a very silent killer – until a fracture occurs. However, here are few symptoms every woman should watch out for.
Symptoms: Backache, a gradual loss of height and an accompanying stooped posture, fractures of the spine, wrist, or hip
Prevention: If detected early, it can be treated with calcium and vitamin D, exercise, and osteoporosis medications.
An unusual feeling of sadness sometimes provoked by outside factors.Women are easily depressed over issues and can easily fall into a sad, anxious, empty, or pessimistic abyss. Depression is serious as it could lead to suicidal tendencies or death wish.
Symptoms: Feeling sad, anxious, or empty, feeling hopeless or pessimistic, feeling guilty, worthless, or helpless, not enjoying things you used to enjoy, trouble with concentration, memory, or making decisions, sleeping too much or too little, appetite changes, gaining or losing weight, feeling restless or irritable, thoughts of suicide or death.
Prevention: Cultivate supportive relationships, exercise, eat healthy, do things that make you feel good, avoid being alone, reach out, take prescribed medications. Also, a combination of treatments, such as medication and psychotherapy in treating depression for those who don’t respond to standard treatment. Non-drug approaches can also be effective when used either alone or with other treatments.
Immune System Disorders
This is caused by an abnormally low activity or over activity of the immune system. Where the immune system is over active, the body begins to attack itself and damages its own tissues (autoimmune diseases).
When the immune system becomes deficient or low in activity it reduces the body’s ability to fight invaders, causing vulnerability to infections.
Symptoms: Joint pain, muscle pain or weakness or a tremor, weight loss, insomnia, heat intolerance or rapid heartbeat, recurrent rashes or hives, sun-sensitivity, a butterfly-shaped rash across your nose and cheeks, weight gain or cold intolerance, hair loss or white patches on your skin or inside your mouth, abdominal pain, blood or mucus in your stool, multiple miscarriages or blood clots.
Prevention: Find a doctor that appeals specially to your health, get tested for mercury and other heavy metals also test for celiac disease (an autoimmune reaction to wheat and other gluten-containing grains) -which causes over 60 autoimmune diseases, eliminate inflammatory foods from your diet such as dairy, eggs, corn and animal fats for a few weeks, take immune-balancing nutrients and supplements, including vitamin D, essential fats (like EPA/DHA and GLA), and probiotics, engage in deep relaxation daily through yoga, meditation, biofeedback, or anything that reverses the stress response, detoxify as often as possible.
Health is wealth, when unsure of how your body feels, practice the principle of precaution which says that we should avoid anything with the potential for harm.
In the US, something has to be proven harmful before it is taken off the market. In Europe, something has to be proven safe before it is allowed on the market, In Nigeria, well……….. fill in the blanks.
By Olabode Aderemi Temitayo