Wellness check! 5 ways to give yourself a checkup from home
Can't get to your doctor for your annual checkup? No prob—you can give yourself a basic wellness check while you wait! Here are 5 ways to give yourself a checkup from home.
Review your diet and exercise
Your doctor usually asks if you're eating right and getting enough physical activity in your day. Be real with yourself. Have you been overloading on junk food? Learn a healthy new recipe to prepare instead. Make sure you're not eating too little, either. Ask a parent for their input if you feel uncertain. Fitness is more than just weight—you're giving your body the fuel and maintenance it needs to help you feel your best. Want to overhaul your diet? Learn about intuitive eating here.
Check your pulse
An easy way to see if something's up with your health is to check your pulse. The med school at Harvard published an easy guide to checking your pulse, including what to look out for. For adults, the normal rate of beats per minute falls between 60 and 100, though this can vary. Checking your pulse is a basic step you can take to make sure your heart is in good health.
Examine your moles
The second most common form of cancer diagnosed in young people is melanoma, a kind of skin cancer. If you've got moles on your skin, examine them. Skin cancer can affect people of all shades and ages. Look for moles that are unusually colored, such as pink or blue, and unusually shaped. You can learn of more warning signs at cancer.org, and practice preventative care by slathering on sunscreen before you go outside.
When you're staying inside all day binge-watching Netflix, it's hard to remember to drink water. But hydration is super-important for your skin and your health. Estimates vary, but generally women are advised to drink *eight* cups of water a day. Spot the signs of dehydration—darker-colored urine, dizziness, headaches and fatigue. Hydration is an overlooked aspect of health that's easy to improve.
Don't forget about mental health
2020 has been a stressful year for everyone. You don't have to suffer a major tragedy to feel depressed or anxious. If you've found yourself losing interest in your passions and struggling to get out of bed, reach out to someone—a sibling, friend, teacher or parent—and let them know how you feel. Don't worry about being a burden or feeling ashamed. Being honest when you're struggling is a brave move towards getting the help you need.
None of this advice is meant to substitute for a professional medical opinion. If you think you have reason for concern, talk with your parents about setting up a telehealth conference with your doctor or scheduling an in-person appointment.
What's your go-to wellness boost? Share with us on Twitter @girlslifemag!
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