You may have your fitness routine down to a science and your diet in check but you still need screening to make sure your entire body is functioning as it should. Screening, therefore, is as a preventative measure to detect any potential health problem, especially when there aren't symptoms.

Regular screening can save your life, and if the disease is detected early you can prevent complications and improve your life.

Breast cancer symbol[source: google}

Here are 7 essential tests every woman should do;

Blood pressure

Blood pressure or hypertension can creep up on you and after menopause, women have a higher risk of developing it than men. If your blood pressure is below 120/80 millimeters of mercury(mm Hg), which is the most ideal state/reading, you should have it checked at least once every 2 years. This should commence at age 20.For women over 40  or those with conditions such as obesity, an annual screening is highly recommended.

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Cholesterol check

This test is used to assess your risk for developing heart disease or stroke. From age 20,cholesterol should be checked at least once every 5 years. Levels should ideally be less than 200 milligrams per deciliter.

Pap smears

This is a test conducted to screen for cervical cancer, which is the fourth most common cancer in women and affects the cervix. Doctors use a speculum to widen the vaginal canal, take cells from the cervix with a small brush and examine those cells for changes that may lead to cervical cancer. Every woman from age 21-65,they should have it every 3 years.

Mammograms

This is a test to screen for breast cancer. It involves compressing the breast between plates so that x-ray images can be captured. The risk for cancer increases as you age so every 2 years, make an effort to get you tested. You can also get screened annually during breast cancer awareness month in October. If  there is a family history of the disease, talk to your doctor about starting it earlier.

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Blood Glucose

Starting around age 45, women should get this test done every 3 years to check for prediabetes or diabetes. Plasma glucose test reading 100mg/dl or higher than that indicates you may be prediabetic but reading greater than 126mg/dl indicates diabetes. If you are obese or have a family history, start the testing earlier and get screened more often.

Dental checkup

All adult women need twice-yearly dental check up. Through regular dental checkup which involves cleaning and examining the teeth along with x-rays can aid spot early signs of decay and any other teeth, gum- or mouth-related problem.

Colon cancer screening

This should start at the age of 50.You will either have a sigmoidoscopy in which a lighted tube and camera are inserted in the anus to examine the lower abdomen or a colonoscopy in which a longer tube examines the entire colon. The former should be repeated every 5 years while the latter, every 10 years.

Feature photos: Shutterstock

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