If you’re a woman in your 30s, there are a number of medical tests you ought to have had, or should be having regularly.
According to Better Health Victoria, women are recommended to have a check up with their General Practitioner once a year. Seeing your doctor regularly, particularly one who knows your medical history, lifestyle choices and your family’s history of disease, increases the likelihood of picking up early warning signs of illness.
We spoke to Dr Brad McKay and consulted the official guidelines for preventive activities in general practice to determine the medical tests every woman in their 30s ought to have had.
According to Dr Brad McKay, blood pressure should be checked every one to two years. If there have been issues in the past, you will need to be checked more regularly.
Every woman over the age of 35 should have her cholesterol checked, and this should be repeated every five years. Testing will need to be more frequent if you are at high risk.
This is essentially a diabetes check and should be carried out every three years.
A kidney check is performed via a blood test and should be followed up every one to two years.
In Australia, women should be having their skin checked every year. If you have red hair, fair skin, or have a family history of melanoma, this will need to be more frequent.
Dr Brad McKay says with Pap Smear testing women needed to be checked every two years, but the system has changed since the end of last year. Now, cervical screening needs to be carried out once every five years.
What you need to know about cervical cancer. Post continues.
See your optometrist every two years and have your vision tested.
You should visit a dentist every six months for a professional clean and check up.
Ensure you’re getting the vaccines you need if you’re travelling overseas. Tetanus immunisations come with Pertussis, Dr Brad McKay explains, along with Diphtheria and it’s recommended to have this immunisation once every 10 years.
Pregnant women will need Pertussis vaccinations during pregnancy to protect their baby from whooping cough. This vaccination is also recommended to anyone who will be spending time around babies younger than six weeks old.
Pregnant women also need to have the flu vaccine, because they are at a much higher risk of being admitted to Intensive Care, Dr McKay explains.
Women who are Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander have a higher risk of kidney disease, diabetes, high cholesterol and high blood pressure, among other health conditions, and therefore will need to be tested more regularly.
The last point that shouldn’t be forgotten, is a mental health check-up if you’re feeling low, anxious, excessively tired or angry. If you’ve ever struggled with mental health or are on medication for an existing condition, it’s important you check in with your doctor regularly to ensure your current treatment is right for you.