06 Aug

Health Checklist for Women Over 50

Once you hit 50 it is so important and worthwhile to have a health checklist to refer to and tick off each year.

Why? Because it is always better to catch things early. If you do that, you stand the very best chance of being able to do something about it. Time your checklist around your birthday – that makes it easier to remember.

Don’t let a developing health condition get serious when it doesn’t have to.

Health checklist for women over 50 in New Zealand

✔ Breast

Be aware of any changes happening in your breasts and keep up to date with mammograms. Women aged between 45-69 years of age can get a free mammogram every two years. Find out more about at  Time to Screen (breast screening)

✔ Cervical

Regular smear tests reduce your risk of developing cervical cancer by 90%. A smear test can be done by a doctor, practice nurse, midwife, Family Planning clinic, sexual health services, marae-based or other Maori health centres, or community health services eg Pacific or women’s health centres. Find out more at Time to Screen (cervical screening)

✔ Bone

A bone check can identify if you may have osteoporosis, which causes your bones to be thinner and weaker than normal, and fracture more easily. If you have any risk factors you may be recommended to do a bone density test called a DEXA Scan

✔ Heart

Ensure you get your blood pressure taken, and head off to the lab and get those common blood tests done for cholesterol etc. 

✔ Blood sugar

Have your blood sugar levels tested for diabetes. This is especially important if you have high blood pressure.

✔ Bowel

Bowel cancer screening is currently being rolled out throughout New Zealand, and is a simple test you can complete at home. Find out more at Time to Screen (bowel screening).  If you have any risk factors you may be recommended to have a colonoscopy

✔ Mental Health

Keep active, eat good food, keep in contact and talk with people, and try to manage your stress and talk to someone if you’re feeling tired and overwhelmed. Find out more about services offering support, information and help   

✔ Skin

Check your skin regularly for any changes and if you have any concerns have a skin check with your doctor, dermatologist or other skin specialist.

✔ Teeth

The NZ Dental Association recommends visiting your dentist once a year to detect any problems early.

✔ Eyes

Ensure you have an eye check at least every 2 years, or yearly if you have a family history, to check your vision and eye health.

✔ Lungs

If you are a smoker, quitting smoking is one of the best things you can do. Find out more at Smokefree Help & Advise  


Remember: go through and tick off your health checklist each year. Don’t let a developing health condition get serious when it doesn’t have to!


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