Women in their 40s are at a crucial point in their lives where getting serious about their health is integral. Receiving regular physicals and exams are essential to maintaining proper health and preventing or treating diseases early on.
- Heart disease- Women are affected by heart disease at a higher rate than men, and the problem appears to be getting worse. According to Dr. Holly Andersen from Ronald O. Perelman Heart Institute at NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital, “the last decade has seen a steady increase among younger women ages 35 to 44.”
- Osteoporosis- Bone mass generally begins to decrease beginning in people’s early 40’s, with the problem getting progressively worse from there. This is why it is so important to begin taking supplements like calcium and vitamin d, to help slow the loss of bones with age. Low bone density can result in tooth decay, fractures, broken bones, and other complications.
- High blood pressure and cholesterol- With age, blood pressure and cholesterol will naturally raise. Having high blood pressure and cholesterol will greatly heighten your risk of stroke and heart attacks. It is important to regularly get your blood pressure and cholesterol levels checked by a doctor, and eat a diet conducive to maintaining a healthy body.
- Breast cancer- The risk of a women developing breast cancer will increase with age. According to the U.S. Preventative Services task Force, women are at the greatest risk between the ages of 50-74. Nonetheless, many women in their forties begin getting mammograms, as early detection of breast cancer will greatly increase your chances of recovery.
- Stroke- Though stokes are most common among people in their mid-fifties and beyond, nearly 15% of all strokes affect people who are 45 and younger. Fortunately for younger people, they also experience a greater level of recovery than strokes affecting older people.
- Anxiety and depression- According to Gloria Goodwin from Beyond Anxiety and Depression, women experienced an increased risk in developing anxiety, depression, and other mental health issues in their 40s. Women, aged 44, are the greatest demographic affected by depression. Part of this could be due to premenopausal hormone changes.
- Changes in vision and hearing loss- Both our hearing and sight will degrade with age. Getting regular eye and hearing exams can help you to be aware of any significant changes.
- Female sexual dysfunction- An unfortunate aspect of aging is changes in sexual health and abilities. Many people experience a decrease in libido with age, as well as problems with female sexual dysfunction and male erectile dysfunction.
- Type 2 diabetes- Type 2 diabetes is another disease that increases in prevalence amongst older people. It is very important to be regularly tested for type 2 diabetes, as many people may go undiagnosed. The Center of Disease Control and Prevention estimates that nearly 14% of all people between the ages of 45 and 64 have type 2 diabetes.
- Chronic pain- Most people will begin to develop some level of chronic pain as they age. Chronic pain can incorporate back pain, muscle pain, arthritis, sciatica, and tendonitis. Many may begin to notice symptoms of these arising as early as their forties, with their risk of developing these symptoms heightening as they age.
Ney York Times: Too Young to Have a Stroke? Think Again: By Jane E. Brody
NetDoctor: Health Checklist for Women in their 40s
New York-Presbyterian: Women’s Health Alert: Fighting Heart Disease in Your 40s
Remedy’s Health Communities: Healthy Aging: Healthy Living in Your 40s
John Hopkins Medicine: Despite New Recommendations, Women In 40s Continue To Get Routine Mammograms at Same Rate: Insurance Coverage for Annual Screening Likely One Reason for Persistence
Beyond Anxiety and Depression: Facts about Depression in Women over 40:Gloria Goodwin