You At Your Best

June 2017 • Mental Health

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8 | YOU AT YOUR BEST | NWADG.COM/YOUATYOURBEST JUNE - MENTAL HEALTH | SATURDAY, MAY 27, 2017 SPECIAL TO NWA DEMOCRAT-GAZETTE In addition to the celebration of Father's Day, June has always been a month for dads and men in general – think barbecues, Bermuda shorts and dad in the yard trying to get that lawn just right. This month, let's help the men in our lives take an annual inven- tory of their health. Whether you're a dad, a grand- dad or just a busy guy, here are the top 10 health checks every man should complete each year: Height, Weight and BMI Experts now believe that cardi- ac health is impacted by even small increases above your ideal weight. If your weight has increased more than 5 or 10 pounds since last year, it may be time to consider some lifestyle chang- es. Blood Pressure Blood pressure can fl uctuate from day-to-day, so it's important to use a reliable machine to check it regu- larly. If your blood pressure is over 140 (top number) or 90 (bottom number), you should schedule an appointment with your primary physician. Cholesterol There are several schools of thought on cholesterol, so any man with risk factors for heart disease (fam- ily history, diabetes, kidney disease) should talk at length with his doctor about individual goals. Prostate Screening Again Recommendations vary by pa- tient and physician. In general, men age 50 or older should discuss the ap- propriate level of screening for pros- tate cancer with their doctor. African American men and those with a family history of prostate cancer should dis- cuss screening at age 45. Lung Cancer Screening Men aged 55 to 80 with a fami- ly history of lung cancer, or who have smoked for a number of years, should talk to their doctor about an annual CT scan of the lungs. Early detection is critical to survival rates for lung can- cer, as there are typically no symptoms until the later stages. Blood Sugar and Diabetes Men should have a fasting blood glucose test at least every three years starting at age 45 – more often if they are overweight or have high blood pressure. Another key measurement of healthy blood glucose is an A1C test – talk to your doctor about whether it's appropriate for you. Bone Density Men age 50 to 70 with risk fac- tors such as long-term steroid, tobac- co or alcohol use should be screened routinely for possible osteoporosis and overall bone health. Colonoscopy Screening for colon cancer for most men starts at age 50. If testing re- veals no abnormalities, it will typically only need to be redone every 5 or 10 years. Men who suffer with various "gut issues" can be at higher risk and may need to screen more aggressively to catch this deadly cancer early. Skin Checks Approximately 10,000 people each year die from melanoma, and two-thirds of those deaths are men. Add an annual skin check with a der- matologist or qualifi ed practitioner to your health inventory. Dental and Eye Health Eye health and vision problems are often key indicators of other health problems, and dental problems can signifi cantly impact the health of sev- eral vital organs. See your dentist for a deep cleaning at least once per year, and have your eye health and vision checked annually. Because these tests are consid- ered preventive, most of them will be covered by insurance plans at least once per year. However, there may be certain diagnostic or timing crite- ria you have to meet, so always check with your insurance company before making the necessary appointments. To fi nd a primary care physician near you, call 800-734-2024 or visit to request an ap- pointment. From all of us at Northwest Health to all the dads and granddads in Northwest Arkansas, Happy Father's Day! We honor and celebrate you. Celebrate Healthy DADS with Our "TOP 10" An Important Annual Inventory of Their Health

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