Screening for health problems is important for all ages, but it’s especially crucial as one gets older. As seniors are more at risk for certain health issues such as arthritis, osteoporosis, diabetes, heart and respiratory diseases, catching these problems early can make a big difference in the quality of life. The ongoing Covid-19 pandemic has also contributed to a rise in chronic diseases and unhealthy lifestyles in Singapore. Apart from the spike in hypertension and diabetes, another worrying trend is the increase in obesity and high-risk body mass index (BMI) – which has been seen more commonly among adults aged 30 to 59. With that in mind, regular screening can help identify potential conditions when they are easier to treat.
What you should know about your health
More often than not, the initial symptoms of major illnesses can go unnoticed for a long time. It may take months or years before your medical ailments become more obvious and harder to manage. As such, it is always good to be proactive and keep track of your own health. In fact, screening for various health conditions is one way to practice preventive health care. Early detection of certain health problems can lead to better treatment outcomes and even prevent the development of more serious complications. Some key areas to look at include your blood pressure, BMI and cholesterol levels.
Additionally, it is also vital to be informed on your family’s health history. If a health condition runs in your family, it is possible that your risk of developing the same condition is higher. By understanding the medical conditions and diseases that have occurred in your family, you may be able to spot early signs and symptoms in yourself and take steps to prevent or treat them.
Sharing information about your family health history with your doctor can also help them provide you with the best possible care. If you’re not sure where to start, ask your parents or other close relatives about their health history – they likely have information that could be helpful.
Plan ahead and learn about what critical illness insurance entails in Singapore.
What age should you start getting a health screening?
So when should you start considering going for health screening then? From as early as 18 years old, you can screen for obesity and hypertension through the BMI Waist circumference and blood pressure measurement tests. Hypertension or high blood pressure, in particular, can lead to a number of serious health problems like heart attack and stroke down the road if left unchecked.
What health screenings do I need?
At the age of 40 years old and above, there are other screening tests for cervical cancer, breast cancer, colorectal cancer and other chronic illnesses. These are important indicators that can tell you about your risk of developing these health issues. Take a look at our Expat Health Guide to learn about general health check-ups and condition-specific health screenings.
Bear in mind to consult your doctor about which screenings are right for you, and make sure to schedule them regularly. Doing so can help you stay healthy and avoid costly medical bills later on. Depending on your personal risk factors and health history, your doctor will then advise on the frequency of your follow-up health screenings. With screenings done on a regular basis, you can achieve active ageing while having an up-to-date understanding of your overall health status.
Are health checkups covered by insurance?
No one can predict when they will become ill or have an accident. For this reason, it is important to have medical insurance to help cover the costs of dentist visits or surgeries and hospitalisation. But did you know that your health insurance policy can also cover your health checkups?
That’s right – there are health insurance plans that offer coverage for screenings in Singapore to match your needs. If you’re due for a screening, be sure to check with your health insurance provider to see if you qualify for this benefit.
On the other hand, if you don’t have health insurance, now is a good time to look into purchasing a plan. For both locals and foreigners in Singapore, you can easily speak to our dedicated team of consultants at Expat Insurance. Get in touch with us today for more information.