For many people, health care is only considered when they are already ill, but preventative health care is important regardless of your age, gender or condition.
Experts at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) have stated that some diseases such as strokes or cancer can affect you at any age.
However, other chronic diseases can be prevented or treated more effectively if you were to practice preventative health care.
When it comes to preventative care, some steps can be taken at home while others, such as vaccinations or tests used to detect diseases, may only be accessible in health clinics.
However, one of the most effective ways to maintain your health is to take independent steps for preventative care.
For example, some common ways to easily care for your health is to improve the air quality in your home by replacing your filters on time or taking steps to improve the general safety in your home.
You can also take steps to practice healthy personal habits that can help boost and safeguard your immune system.
Follow the preventative health care tips below in order to strengthen and protect your health.
Tip 1: Keep Your Hands Clean by Washing Them Frequently
One of the most significant causes of most illnesses is germs and bacteria. In order to prevent these ailments, you should try to reduce your exposure to germs by keeping your hands clean.
You are likely to touch many objects and people throughout your day, which can expose you to a wide variety of germs and unhealthy bacteria.
A few of the most common sources of these bacteria include, but are not limited to the following:
- Feces – As gross as it may seem, feces particles can easily get on your hands if you ever change a baby’s diaper or go to the toilet. Unfortunately, even a small amount can contain harmful bacteria that cause diseases such as E. coli and salmonella.
- Body Fluids – Although we may not see it, bodily fluids such as mucus and saliva can be found on many surfaces around you from people coughing, sneezing or touching them with contaminated hands. These fluids can contain bacteria that can easily transfer diseases, so it is important to wash your hands to clean off anybody fluids you may have touched.
- Raw Meat – Raw meat is usually at a high-risk of containing bacteria and some can even carry trace amounts of animal feces. You should be sure to always wash your hands and sterilize your kitchen after handling raw meat.
- Secondary Transference – When someone or something other than you transfer their germs onto another surface, it is referred to as secondary transference. You can pick up bacteria and germs if you touch an area of the surface that has been contaminated. Secondary transference commonly occurs in public restrooms and other communal areas.
The most effective way to lower your chances of exposing yourself to harmful germs and bacteria is to wash your hands.
Washing your hands thoroughly can remove certain contaminants found in feces, raw meat, trash and other sources.
To wash your hands properly, follow these steps:
- Run both of your hands under water till they are wet.
- Thoroughly scrub your wet hands with soap. Get both sides of your hands and under your fingernails.
- Continue scrubbing for about 15 seconds and a lather has formed on your hands.
- Rinse all of the soap off of both your hands.
- Dry your hands with a clean paper towel or washcloth.
Tip 2: Avoid Known Allergen and Potential Contagions
Allergens cause your body to have a negative reaction by making your immune system misfire.
Unfortunately, allergens are not always easily identified and some are more common than others.
If you are familiar with a source of allergies you should remove the allergen from your immediate environment and attempt to avoid it as much as possible.
Some common symptoms of being exposed to an allergen include:
- Itchy skin.
- Swelling where contact was made.
- Difficulties breathing.
- Runny nose.
In order to prevent or reduce the effects of an allergic reaction, you should take over-the-counter allergy medications and attempt to avoid any allergens or potential contagions.
If you are aware that someone or somewhere nearby has a known contagion, you should also attempt to avoid the area.
You should attempt to stay away from people who are sick, especially if you have a vulnerable immune system.
Wear a protective mask if possible and wash your hands thoroughly if you come into contact with any potential contagions.
Tip 3: Ensure that Your Home Has Good Aid Quality
Having poor air quality in your living environment can have numerous harmful effects, especially since you will be breathing in these contaminants daily.
A common issue you may face is poor ventilation, which increases the chances of having in-home air pollution.
Having poor ventilation can cause your heating system to be unable to draw air from outside or it may cause your indoor air to not properly filter out contaminants.
A quick and easy way to prevent airborne illnesses and improve air quality is to ensure that all vents, filters and duct systems in your home are clean.
Tip 4: Get a Sufficient Amount of Sleep Each Night
Sleep plays one of the most essential roles in maintaining your physical health and preventing a number of illnesses.
This is because your body strengthens and repairs itself while you are sleeping.
In fact, the U.S. Department of Disease Prevention and Health Promotion has stated that a consistent lack of sleep can increase their risk of contracting illnesses such as diabetes, high blood pressure and heart disease.
Conversely, getting a good amount of quality sleep every night can boost your metabolism and help your body regulate and maintain its blood sugar levels.
This will also improve your immune system and strengthen your body’s ability to fend off germs and bacteria.
According to the Center for Disease Control, you are recommended to get at least seven hours of sleep each night.