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Most of us are guilty of nagging our husbands at times: “Take out the trash”; “stop driving so fast”; “are you sure that is the tie you want to wear?” Most of the time it can just be annoying, but when it comes to his health, nagging can be a life saver. If your husband is a procrastinator about his health then stay on top of him to get at least these few regular tests and check-ups.

In His 20s

  • Blood Pressure Check: Checking your blood pressure is one of the tests that you should start as soon as possible if you aren’t doing so already. High blood pressure is a leading cause of stroke, heart attack, congestive heart failure and kidney disease. It is also one of the easiest things to test and monitor. So, send in your husband for a regular blood pressure check or monitor it with an at home automatic pump that has been approved by your physician.
  • Cholesterol: Experts recommend a cholesterol check for your LDL (bad) cholesterol and your HDL (good) cholesterol every 5 years. If your husband is skipping this check, he is at a greater risk for congestive heart failure and stroke.  The test is best conducted by your physician as there are many factors that can be contributing to your cholesterol numbers.
  • Testicular Cancer: Just as it is highly recommended to regularly do self breast exams for women, it is just as recommended for men to do regular testicular checks for irregular lumps. Testicular cancer is very treatable if detected early and is most prevalent in men in their 20s and 30s. It is recommended to do the test once a month and if there are any concerns do not hesitate to contact your physician.

In His 30s

  • Thyroid test: The American Thyroid Association recommends that all adults be tested beginning at age 35 and continuing every 5 years. According to the U.S. department of Health and Human Services too much thyroid hormone in the bloodstream causes hyperthyroidism, which results in increased metabolic rate, weight loss, sweating, rapid heart rate, and high blood pressure, among other symptoms. Too little thyroid hormone causes hypothyroidism, which slows down bodily functions and leads to fatigue, weight gain, cold intolerance, and related symptoms.

In His 40s

  • Diabetes Screening: The ADA recommends that all adults aged 45 years and older be screened for diabetes every 3 years but should be done more often if you have severe risk factors. If detected in the pre-diabetic stage it is possible that your husband can alter diet and exercise to decrease his risk.
  • Vitamin D Test: According to the Mayo Clinic, Vitamin D is vital for strong bones and also has important roles in immune function and cancer prevention. Most adults do not get a sufficient amount of Vitamin D which can be a large factor in the high numbers of osteoporosis. You can also get too much of this vitamin, so it is important to know what the right amount is for you.

In His 50s

  • Colonoscopy: It is recommended to have a routine colonoscopy after the age of 50 as it can detect some very treatable problems. A colonoscopy helps find ulcers, colon polyps, tumors, and areas of inflammation or bleeding. Colorectal cancer can be treated if caught early, so your husband should not hesitate to get this important exam.
  • Prostate Exam: This simple test can help detect prostate cancer as well as an enlarged prostate which can greatly affect the ability to urinate properly. It is important to speak with a physician to determine how regularly this test should be performed and how necessary follow up tests and treatments may be.

It is always best to stay up to date on all his eye sight, hearing and dental checkups as well as checking for any abnormalities on a regular basis at home. Asking your doctor about any possible concerns that “may be nothing” is always better than ignoring a possible problem.

Find a doctor that your husband feels comfortable with to make him more likely to visit regularly, ask questions, and voice any medical concerns he may have. Always stay up to date on the yearly physical exam and maintain healthy diet and exercise.  He may put up a fight about it, but he will truly appreciate all your love and concern.