7 simple ways to take care of your health

Posted on February 27, 2018 by Helen Field

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It can be easy to put off an eye test or a dental problem, especially if there's nothing causing discomfort. But when we don't keep an eye on maintaining our health, ailments can go unnoticed and can develop into bigger health problems. Discover seven simple ways to take care of your health in this blog.

1. Have an eye test

Having an eye test is a great place to start. An optician can tell a lot from your eyes including what your cholesterol and blood pressure are like, and if there is an unusual amount of pressure in the eye. Spotting abnormal changes can help detect your risk of diseases like glaucoma, cataracts, diabetes, arthritis, dementia, and even tumours.

Tips for everyday eye protection

  • Make sure your eyes are getting the right UV protection by wearing prescription sunglasses with the CE mark or the British Standard BS EN ISO 12312-1:2013
  • Did you know you can get prescription safety glasses, so there's no need to double-up on eyewear? Help protect your eyes from flying splinters and dust or flicks of paint at home, while doing DIY
  • You can make your swimming pool visits more enjoyable with prescription swimming goggles. They can help you get a clearer view of where you're swimming underwater and stop those eyes turning red and sore from chlorine

2. Have a chat

Some animals are solitary by nature, humans are social. Being around people and interacting with them has been shown to decrease stress, anxiety, and depressive symptoms. Studies show that talk therapy is effective for treating depression and helping people feel better. This is because when people talk and receive comfort from others, oxytocin is released which makes us feel good. And so, having a chat with a friend over coffee, or even a professional counsellor over the phone, can work wonders.

Tips for everyday wellbeing

  • Try chatting with a friend or your family. Some people find it easier to confide in someone they know because it makes them feel more at ease. Looking at your problem from a different perspective can help you figure out the best way to resolve your problem or decide which path to take next.
  • Try chatting to a trained counsellor. Whether you feel depressed, troubled by money matters, are going through a divorce, being bullied, or have a burning question about mortgages, talking problems through with someone can make a real difference. Professional advice may just give you what you needed to get through your difficult time.

3. Have some tender loving care

If you've ever had a massage to help relieve stress, you'll know just how supple and calm it can make you feel afterwards. Studies hint that a touch of any kind can reduce the heart rate and lower blood pressure. Touch or massage can therefore be effective for treating anxiety as well as muscular aches and pains, and even a hug or even a hand shake can help release endorphins like oxytocin to make you feel good, according to research. 

Tips for dealing with everyday aches and pains

  • Try reflexology where a reflexologist will use oils to massage your feet while you just close your eyes and breathe calmly. The idea is to encourage your nervous system to balance your body, enabling tension or pain to subside
  • Try acupuncture which uses needles, heat and pressure as an alternative treatment for easing tension and pain. The needles are used to stimulate the sensory nerves under the skin which prompts the release of feel-good endorphins. Afterwards you should feel very relaxed
  • Try physiotherapy to ease health conditions to do with bones and joints, the nervous system, heart and circulation, and breathing. By looking at the body as a whole, a physiotherapist can help improve movement by using manual therapy

4. Have a dental check-up

Did you know, tooth enamel is the hardest substance in the human body? And, if it's damaged it can't regrow or heal itself. A visit to your dentist can help you keep on top your oral health as they'll be able to detect any potential problems or tooth damage.

Tips for everyday dental care

Floss between your teeth - small gaps are prone to getting food caught up in them which can feel irritating and lead to plaque build-up. Why not carry some dental floss around in your handbag or pocket?

Interdental brushes are also handy and small enough to carry around. You can choose different sizes for getting in between gaps to help avoid plaque build-up and swollen gums, which can lead to gum disease. 

Brush your teeth twice a day. This can help reduce the build-up of plaque and the possibility of tooth decay.

5. Have your feet cared for

Incredibly, 25% of all the bones in your body are in your feet. When these bones are out of alignment, so is the rest of your body, and this can lead to other aches and pains in other parts of your body. Your feet can reveal a lot about your general health, so conditions like arthritis, diabetes, nerve and circulatory disorders can often show their early symptoms in your feet.

Tips for everyday foot care

  • Protect your feet - They can pick up an array of nasty diseases from communal showers like plantar warts, athlete's foot, and ring worm, and commonly the verruca. So, make sure you wear flip-flops in the communal showers, whether you have a foot problem or not!
  • Podiatry can help keep your feet in top condition for wearing flip-flops or sandals in the summer. It can also help sort painful foot problems like ingrown toenails, verrucas, flat feet, and athlete's foot

6. Have a health check

If you're worried about some symptoms, a diagnostic consultation can provide a deep analysis through a blood test. It can help you understand your general health like how well organs are working, and help diagnose infections or diseases and conditions like cancer. It can help you discover your risk of heart disease, how well your blood is clotting, and even certain genetic conditions.

Our health plan's diagnostic consultation offers a visual field test, which can help diagnose and monitor glaucoma, by testing central and peripheral vision. Glaucoma is a disease which can cause damage to the optic nerve and lead to progressive vision loss. As with other conditions, it's easier to treat if detected and treated earlier on.

Tips for everyday general health

  • A health check can help prevent diabetes, heart disease, kidney disease, stroke, and dementia. The free NHS health check for people aged 40-74 alone has the potential to prevent 1,600 heart attacks and strokes.
  • See your pharmacist for blood pressure checks. Many pharmacies and gyms have wellness kiosks where you can check your weight, blood pressure and get results on how health you are for your age.

7. Ease your mind, have a call with a GP

Have you ever been so worried about a medical problem that you've gone to A&E? An estimated 10-30% of A&E cases could have been dealt with by a GP. Getting an appointment quickly with a GP over the phone can help save time and give you peace of mind. Having a 24/7 GP phone service that's simple to use and fast can help you get to the root of any medical problems you or your family are having.

Simplyhealth's 24/7 GP phone service ticks all of these boxes. A GP will call you any time of day, even on bank holidays. If you want to show a GP your symptoms, you can use a webcam. Other costs do apply - you'll need to make the initial call to a friendly operator to arrange for a GP to call you when it's convenient. And, if you're recommended a prescription, you can arrange it to be delivered to you for an extra cost.

The simplest way to take care of your health

Having a simple way to keep an eye on every aspect of your everyday health can make it easier for you to stay on top. Whether you want to help keep your teeth in check with regular dental visits, or regularly soothe arthritic pain with physiotherapy, our Simply Cash Plan can help you.

With different levels to choose from, depending on how much cover you need, you can make looking after you and your family's everyday health easier than ever. Plus with online claiming, you can get your costs back faster. All you do is attend your appointment as usual and pay, submit your claim and receipt online, and you'll receive the payment back within 1-2 days. You can add up to four of your children to your plan for free, so you can keep an eye on you little ones' health at the same time.

Discover the Simplyhealth Plan today and take care of you and your family's health the simple way.