Melanoma, the most dangerous form of skin cancer, is also one of the most common types of cancer in people under the age of 30. Using a daily moisturizer containing SPF, protecting your skin with lightweight clothing or protective covering, and using plenty of sunscreen while laying poolside can reduce your chances of developing this disease. If you notice a new skin spot or a spot that is changing in color, size or shape, contact your general practitioner or a dermatologist right away.
Type 2 Diabetes
An estimated 3.1 million women in the United States don’t know they have Type 2 diabetes. Knowing risk factors like obesity, family medical history and certain medications as well as being conscious of common symptoms can help you catch diabetes early and make lifestyle changes to curb your risk.
High Blood Pressure
High blood pressure is often referred to as the “silent killer.” Going undetected in many young women, high blood pressure can cause serious damage to the heart, brain, kidneys and blood vessels. When treated early, however, damage can be reduced and your risk of stroke lowers by 48%. It is important to check in with your general practitioner annually and know your risk factors.
For women between the ages of 18 and 34, strokes are not overly common but prove more fatal when they do occur. Your risk of stroke is only increased by high blood pressure, diabetes, obesity or smoking, so a healthy diet, regular exercise and annual check-ups are all helpful preventative measures. Use the acronym FAST to identify whether you or someone else is suffering a stroke: face drooping, arm weakness, speech difficulty, time to call 911.
Mental Health Disorders
For women between the ages of 20 and 44, suicide is a leading cause of death. Mental health matters at every age, but in your twenties, the stress of school, career and a bustling personal life can be especially taxing. Anxiety and eating disorders are common among young women along with bipolar disorder, borderline personality disorder, ADHD and depression. If you currently or potentially suffer from any of these, Franciscan Health offers complete care for mental health. In the case of an emergency, you can reach the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255.
Your twenties are a time to explore and care for your mind, body and spirit. Grow familiar with the risks associated with this stage of life, and never be afraid to reach out to your doctor for guidance.