13 Feb Knowing Your Family Medical History
In this day and age, there are many different options available to keep yourself healthy when you know what you are up against. For some, it seems as if some diagnoses just come out of the blue. What you may not know is that your grandmother or uncle had the same ailment or disease years ago. This is why it is important for you, especially as part of the Baby Boomers generation, to know your family’s medical history. It can prepare you for what is inevitable and save you from what can be prevented. There are several steps to take in order to organize this information to benefit you in the long run.
All of the information you need is going to take a lot of research. First you should create a family tree if you do not already have one. You have to interview as many relatives as you can to truly get the full picture. Start with immediate family members such as your parents and siblings, and record as much information as possible. Next, move on to grandparents and aunts, uncles, and cousins. The more people you are able to interview the better your chances are of getting accurate information. Death certificates and obituaries can also be an insightful resource in this search.
What To Ask
When speaking with your family members it is important to ask about lifestyle factors that affected your relative’s health, immunizations, childhood illnesses and chronic diseases that are prevalent in the family. Knowing the age of onset or age of death is also a vital part of information to be aware of. It is important to know about any cases of mental illness or other emotional disorders that are known to be genetic.
The Next Step
After your research is complete, relay all this information to a trusted physician and ask as many questions as you can. Take all the tests necessary to screen for any signs of any ailments or diseases. It is important that you do not wait until it is too late to start this process. Be proactive and know what you may be up against. You should also keep this information as current as possible. You never know when some new information may come to light. As you take control of your health and your future, you can save your life and maybe even the lives of loved ones in your family.
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