Health care has come a long way since the days the only means to monitor a person’s health was by feeling body temperatures and pulse rates. Now, we have all the necessary technologies for preventing, diagnosing, and treating practically all kinds of diseases with great precision. In fact, we’ve developed reliable methods for testing and gauging each of the scores of known health indicators from blood sugar and pressure levels to heart and respiration rates.
As our understanding of the human body increases, our ways for monitoring health also expand. Those that were once only doable in a medical facility are now safe to do even in the comfort of your own home. Apart from your annual physical, there are a number things you can do to check your health without the assistance of a physician. Here are some of the simplest yet effective ways for monitoring your own health at home.
Stand on One Leg and Measure How Long You Will Last
This seemingly trivial test can reveal vital information about your health. Research suggests that people who are unable to stand on one leg for over 20 seconds are at risk of silent stroke, a type of stroke that doesn’t show symptoms but leads to dementia. Simply put, it gives you a glimpse of how well or bad you will age, consequently providing you with ample amount of time to prevent the health conditions linked to it from ever happening.
Find Pain through Hot Water
Some sources of aches and pains are difficult to locate. It’s important to identify where they are coming from because that’s usually the first step in any diagnosis and treatment. If you are planning to go for a check-up but you are quite uncertain what to tell your doctor when they start asking questions about the pain you are enduring, you can run some tests at home beforehand. One effective test you can try is by locating the source of pain using heat. Fill a bottle with hot water, let it cool down to a bearable temperature, and apply it on the area on your body that’s painful. That will reveal the origin or epicentre of the pain, giving your doctor the necessary information to formulate a correct treatment plan.
Take Note of Your Waist-To-Height Ratio
Body weight is perhaps the most popular health indicator since it can tell you instantly whether your health is improving or going downhill. The Quetelet Index that your physician has been basing his assessment of your health from, however, may not be so accurate because it doesn’t show where most of the fat is actually located. Determining the ratio between your height and your waist is essentially a better alternative, and you can do this using the simplest of things, such as a string belt. The rule of thumb is if your waist measures more than half your height, then you should seriously consider slimming down.
Mole Counting Made Easy
You probably already know that having too many moles on your body increases your risk of skin cancer. Specifically, if you count over 100 moles, you should start finding ways to lower your risk. If you find mole counting rather difficult, there’s actually an easier workaround that you can try. Studies show that people who have more than 11 moles on their right arm are likely to have more than 100 moles on their body. These people may be at 5 times the risk of melanoma and should seek medical attention; even 7 moles on your right arm is worthy of medical attention.
Self-Administered Gerocognitive Exam (SAGE)
As soon as you enter middle age, it’s recommended that you take SAGE to record your mental function. This test involves copying simple pictures and answering questions like “how far did you get in school?” You can use the information you will gather though this test to accurately predict your predisposition to dementia as you grow older.
Sit and Reach
Reaching the toes with your hands without bending your knees is quite a challenge, but it’s a different story if you feel slight pain while doing so. It could mean your arteries have stiffened up over the years of limited movement and that could be leading to a serious health problem down the line. To try this test, sit and lean against the wall, stretch your legs, and reach out for your toes. Take note of the pain building up along the muscles in your middle legs. If it hurts even before your back can fully disconnect from the wall, it’s a red flag that you have to jack up your workout routine. You may also consider getting muscle imbalance treatment from a qualified physio in Newmarket or Grafton.
Timing a Trip on One Flight of Stairs
Another one of those effective health checks you can do at home has to do with the stairs. Did you know that one way doctors determine whether or not they can release a patient who’s just undergone surgery is timing how long it takes for them to walk up and down a flight of stairs? If it took them more than 20 seconds, it means they need to stay for a couple more days in the hospital. Somehow, this can be a great way to measure the health even of someone who hasn’t undergone any medical procedure. You can try it with more than one flight and see how your rate compares to that of a normal, healthy person.
Sit and Stand at the Sound of a Clock’s Tick
A lot of people are so used to having a sedentary lifestyle that their bodies have already forgotten how it feels to suddenly shift from one position to another. This is why one of the best self health check ups at home that you can try is repetitive sitting and standing for one full minute at the sound of the clock’s tick. It is a great way to measure your overall fitness. You can ramp up the difficulty a notch by using only one leg to stand up. Both tests can give you a clear idea of the current and future state of your health.
Practical Hearing Test
It’s not just your bones and muscles that you need to test to learn about the state of your physical health. You have to check on your hearing as well. Some of the common signs that your hearing is deteriorating include always needing to turn up your TV or radio, thinking that people around you are mumbling, and having trouble following conversations in a crowded room. All of these are signs that you need to have your ears checked by a professional.
Sleep Sufficiency Test
Your health can also be measured by the level of sleepiness you feel during the day or throughout the time you are supposed to be awake. If halfway through that time you already feel heavy-eyed, it means you aren’t having enough sleep and that could spell trouble on your health. Sleep deprivation is known to cause a number of health problems, including heart disease, depression, and memory loss.
All of these tests are not just easy to do but also quite effective in revealing information about your health that otherwise remains undiscovered until you’re diagnosed with a severe illness. A regular trip to a physiotherapy clinic like Institute of Sport Physiology in addition to these tests may also greatly contribute to the prevention of any health problems linked to aging.