Take charge of your well-being by embracing regular checkups

Preventative care is a personalised journey that requires resilience, commitment and self-awareness. FILE PHOTO | NMG

It is commonly said, “health is wealth”. This saying emphasises the importance of good health as a valuable asset in life, much like financial wealth. Good health contributes significantly to an individual’s overall quality of life.

The link between preventative care and good health cannot be overstated. Most people think of going to the doctor either when unwell or to receive treatment for a specific medical condition.

However, preventing diseases before they happen is one of the most important things you can do to protect your health.

In today's fast-paced world, we often find ourselves engrossed in the hustle and bustle of daily life, leaving health on the back burner until we become sick.

Embracing preventative care empowers us to take charge of our well-being.

Preventative care includes a set of services meant to screen and possibly identify health issues before symptoms manifest.

It also involves education and counselling that can help you protect your health and make positive lifestyle choices.

Early detection is the superhero in the world of preventive care. Regular screenings, such as cholesterol, blood pressure, and cancer screenings can catch problems at the nascent stages when they are most treatable.

It is estimated that 70 percent of individuals who prioritise preventative healthcare record a decline in illnesses over time.

For the longest time, cost has been the greatest barrier to preventative care. This is now changing as insurance companies increasingly recognise the importance of preventative care in reducing healthcare costs.

They are covering check-ups and preventive screening, enabling their customers to receive regular medical assessments and early detection of potential health issues.

While medical screenings are pivotal, lifestyle choices are equally instrumental in preventing illnesses. The World Health Organisation reports that non-communicable diseases (NCDs), primarily heart and lung diseases, cancer and diabetes, are the world’s largest killers, with an estimated 41 million deaths annually.

In Kenya, NCDs are responsible for more than 50 percent of hospital admissions and 39 percent of all deaths annually.

Lifestyle choices can play a significant role in reducing the risk of non-communicable diseases. Adopting a balanced diet, maintaining a healthy weight, engaging in regular exercise and managing stress are all integral to safeguarding our health.

Preventative healthcare empowers individuals through knowledge. Seeking professional guidance while staying informed about our family history and risk factors will drive proactive and informed choices leading to positive health outcomes.

In conclusion, embracing preventative healthcare is an investment in long-term well-being. While it seems like a minor commitment in the present, its benefits in the future are immeasurable. Preventative care is a personalised journey that requires resilience, commitment and self-awareness.

It's about valuing ourselves enough to make sacrifices and choices that lead to a healthier future. Let’s all take the first step by scheduling that screening or prioritising self-care as we safeguard our vitality.

Dr Misiani is the Head of Clinical Operations, at Jubilee Health Insurance.

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