National Women’s Health Month

Published 6:07 pm Thursday, May 5, 2022

by Jennifer Burchett
Sunday, May 8 th is Mother’s Day but also the kick-off of National Women’s Health Week. Although not
all women are mothers most women are caregivers in some capacity and often put their health on the
back burner. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Office on Women’s Health leads
National Women’s Health Week to encourage all women to be as healthy as possible. Some basic
suggestions include:
• Visiting a health care provider for well-woman visit, preventive screenings, and vaccines
•Get active
•Eat healthy
•Pay attention to mental health, including getting enough sleep and managing stress
•Practice safe behaviors, such as quitting smoking, no texting while driving, and taking steps to
protect yourself from sexually transmitted infections.
Celebrate the week by focusing daily on a health element.

Monday: How active are you? Small changes such as walking more throughout the day, taking the
steps instead of the elevator, and parking further away from the store are just a few. Walking is an
excellent form of exercise and doesn’t require anything other than appropriate shoes.

Tuesday: Make sure your preventive tests are up to date such as mammograms, pap smears, skin
checks for skin cancer, and colonoscopies depending on your age and family history.

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Wednesday: Are you feeling connected with those around you? How much time are you spending on
social media throughout the day as opposed to truly participating in your community? Scrolling through
Facebook isn’t the only way to feel a part of things.

Thursday: Take a few minutes to assess your drinking habits. Talk to your health provider if you have
concerns on how much alcohol you may be drinking and the effects on your body.

Friday: Are you happy with your current birth control? If your current method isn’t working for you,
there are plenty of other options. If you are considering getting pregnant now is the time to focus on
your health and get plenty of folic acid BEFORE you get pregnant to help prevent certain birth defects.

Saturday: The weekends are an excellent time to meal plan for the next week, and even prepare some
meals that can easily be warmed up on busy weeknights. The extra time allows for thinking about
healthier options and can counter the urge to grab unhealthy fast-food throughout the week.

Sunday: Thinking about the up-coming week can increase stress. Work on some strategies that might
alleviate work day stress such as having children pick out their clothes for the week. Assign other family
members to pack lunches or write out each day’s schedule so everyone can plan accordingly!
As women we need to remember we have specific health needs and that our loved ones need us to be
healthy and strong. Take time this week to make yourself a priority!

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