Healthy Habits

To Make Your Goal a Healthier You – Prevention is the Key

What you need to know

At the beginning of the year, we often focus on what is most important, such as increasing time with family and improving your health. By taking charge of your health today, you’ll start to feel your best. And, maintaining your health in the years to come will provide more quality time with those you love.

Annual exams and preventative screenings are just a couple of ways primary care providers can help you achieve your goals. You may not need every test or vaccine every year, so talk to your provider about what’s right for you based on your age, health history, and any symptoms or concerns.

Taking care of yourself may seem like just one more thing to add to your already packed to-do list. But, being proactive about your health is critical as your risk of heart disease, diabetes, high blood pressure, and cancer increase with age.

Maintain Healthy Habits
While some of these habits might be routine for you, others may have taken a backseat to other priorities. Any positive changes you can make today will make a difference for your future health, so review this list of habits to see where you have room for improvement:

• Eat a healthy, well-rounded diet
• Maintain a healthy weight
• Aim for 30 minutes of daily physical activity
• Try to sleep at least 7-8 hours per night
• Don’t start smoking or look for help quitting if you already do
• Limit alcohol to one drink or less per day
• Don’t use illegal drugs or misuse prescription drugs
• Wear a helmet when riding a bike
• Wear a seatbelt in cars
• Don’t text and drive
• Protect yourself from the sun

Focus on Prevention
Preventative health care aims to help you maintain your health in the years to come and catch any problems early, when they’re easier to treat. These may include:

• Flu vaccine
• Pneumonia vaccine (65+)
• Shingles vaccine (60+)
• Hepatitis C (18+)
• HIV and other sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) (18+)
• Pap test and HPV
• Breast cancer screening – Mammograms ages 50-74; ages 40-49with a strong family history
• Tuberculosis
• Blood pressure and cholesterol
• Diabetes
• Osteoporosis (Bone density is recommended at 65; age 50+ in post-menopausal women with additional clinical risk factors.)
• Colorectal cancer screening (45+)•Skin cancer screening

You may not need every test or vaccine every year, so talk to your doctor about what’s right for you based on your age, your health history, and any symptoms or concerns you may have.

How we can help

While your priorities may change through the years, taking care of your health should always be your first concern. Schedule an appointment with an SSM Health provider to get started. To schedule an appointment call (573) 896-8301.

(573) 896-8301 | 140 Northstar, Holts Summit |