As we age, the need for regular medical testing usually increases. Thinking about what and when to be proactive is a great way to monitor changes in your body. Following are common tests that older adults should get.
- Blood Pressure Check: One in 3 adults have elevated blood pressure, known as hypertension. According to the CDC, 64% of men and 69% of women have symptoms that show up too late. Get your blood pressure checked at least once a year. Many of the Medicare Advantage plans now have over the counter allowances and I have seen blood pressure cuffs in the catalog.
- Blood Test for Lipids: Healthy cholesterol and triglyceride levels decrease the risk of heart attack and stroke. Checking lipids could constitute better eating habits, exercise and possibly medication to maintain.
- Colorectal Cancer Exam: After age 50 a colonoscopy is recommended every 10 years. Now there is an at home exam that if you have no family history or prior concerns, can be done every three years. Should something be found, a full colonoscopy will then be recommended. Both are typically covered by Medicare.
- Vaccinations: The CDC recommends a tetanus booster every 10 years along with an annual flu shot for everyone especially those who are chronically ill. Shingrex for shingles and a pneumococcal vaccine are also recommended to protect against shingles and pneumonia respectively.
- Eye Exam and Hearing Tests: An eye exam is recommended annually and hearing every two to three depending on need.
- Dental Exams: Many maladies can be noticed when the mouth isn’t healthy and many medications can have a negative effect on dental health. A periodontal exam including x-rays of the jaw, inspection of teeth, gums and throat should be performed at one of the two cleanings each year.
- Bone Density Scan: Both men and women are at risk for osteoporosis. A bone density test measures mass which is a key indicator of strength. This is recommended at age 65.
- Mammograms, Pap Smear and Prostate Screening: All are recommended as we age but the frequency on both can be personal between you and your doctor. If you haven’t talked with your doctor about these or had a baseline.. Discuss it!
- Skin Check: It is recommended to do a full body scan annually
I hope you are keeping up on your screenings and preventive care and that these can be great talking points between you, your doctor, dentist or other professionals. Keep Healthy!
Information provided by Kelsey Taylor www.getcompletewellness.com Article written in Healthline, August 2016 www.healthline.com/health/senior-health-tests
A little more about us:
The Business Warrior group has some of the industry’s top experts in all the areas your business needs to be successful. Amongst the contributors is Janis VanAhn, owner of Health Insurance Advisor, LLC. For 19 years Janis has worked in and around the health insurance industry initially providing service to agents and employers related to employee benefits, individual healthcare and Medicare, while more recently becoming appointed as an individual agent with various quality carriers to provide this service to individuals through her own business.
Four years ago Janis was ‘blessed’ with being let go from her job at an insurance agency. Staying within insurance was her path…but in what capacity. 2010 was the year Janis began her career as an independent insurance agent specializing in health insurance. Finding quality, cost-effective healthcare for individuals and families under age 65 as well as working with those who are Medicare eligible truly was her passion. She has made this a true specialty and positioned herself as someone to work with whether it is a financial professional or property & casualty agent with a client that needs assistance, to a group of seniors turning 65 and they keep receiving Medicare information and are confused about what to do.
Janis enjoys the one on one contact with clients as well as looking forward to speaking to groups about healthcare. Her excitement for this industry is what drives her to stay in tune with Healthcare Reform and what is currently happening and what will happen with coverage from now to past 2014.
‘Educating individual and Medicare consumers to make informed choices’ is her mission because if people are educated and understand, they will make informed choices that they are comfortable with.