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I’m big on self care on this blog, you’ve probably noticed by now. I’ve been on my own personal self care journey for a good few years now, mostly since my anxiety reared it’s ugly head, I wasn’t aware of vast importance of taking care of yourself and taking time to tend to your needs – whatever they are at any given time. But as I’ve got older and (hopefully) wiser, I’ve come to understand that self care is one of the most important things in your life.
Image Credit: Total Shape
And it certainly isn’t selfish either. Which seems to be this weird misconception that taking CARE of yourself is a selfish thing to do? Odd. Self care comes in so many different forms, the main ones probably being physical and mental self care.
When we’re talking about these areas of self care, things like; get more sleep, drink more water, journal, go to therapy and stretch in the morning tend to come up quite often. And rightly so. All those things are so important and I do or have done all of them to help with my own physical and mental well-being.
But there are some areas of our physical health and physical self care that I think sometimes get overlooked. Because they’re not deemed as important or because they might be a bit gross. Whatever the reason, here are some things we shouldn’t ignore if we’re focusing on maintaining good overall health:
I hate the dentist. Hate, hate, hate it. I always have. I remember being absolutely terrified as a kid of going to the dentist and I also went through a weird phase when I was young where I despised brushing my teeth. Although I think that’s kinda normal. But let’s call a spade a spade, I’ve never taken the best care of my teeth.
I’ve had two fillings (which were both when I was only around 12 years old) and didn’t go to the dentist for years and years and years. What is it about the darn dentist that has everyone shaking in their boots? But for whatever reason, taking care of your teeth is SO important for your overall health. And it definitely all starts at home with the oral care products we’re using. Check out the Philips Sonicare ExpertClean 7500 review for more info on the best toothbrushes you can use to optimize mouth health at home!
Make an appointment with your dentist or an orthodontic clinic and get those teeth seen to! Not looking after your teeth properly can lead to a bunch of things like decay, loose teeth, bad breath and even gum disease – that we really don’t want!
Getting your eyes tested
Unlike the dentist, I actually quite enjoy getting my eyes tested. So I’ve never had a issue here. And now that my eyes seem to just be getting worse and worse, I don’t have a choice but to have my regular check ups any more! Within around a year, my eyes declines a whole point and I was on the border of not being allowed to drive – eek!
Make a point to go for your regular eye tests. They’re only once every 2 years for normal vision or for someone without any vision problems, so it’s not that time consuming. Your regular eye tests identify so much more than just your vision now too, including common eye problems and cataracts.
I can imagine feet being something that most people don’t often think about when it comes to general physical health. They’re a bit gross and usually always covered up with socks or shoes, so why think about them? The way I see it, is that your feet are carrying you around for the whole day – it’s worth taking a bit of care of them!
I’ve always seen a chiropodist over the years for various reasons and now we have someone who comes to our house and does our feet at least once a month and I consider that a part of my self care routine. She checks for anything that needs treating (like verrucas), trims your nails, sorts out hard skin and just gives your feet a bit of TLC. If you have a particular condition already, you should wear specialized inserts as well. Insoles for plantar fasciitis for instance, can help redistribute pressure and reduce pain.
As tempting as it is to put off that cervical screening invite to next month or next year… you absolutely shouldn’t. Of course unless there’s a reason where you would need extra assistance at screenings then you’ll always need to chat to your GP but for most of us, the time to go, is NOW. Women’s health is so important and attending your screenings and any subsequent STD checks are vital to stay on top of what’s going on down there.
Of course STD checks also apply to the men in our lives too. So it’s not just us ladies that need to pay attention to what’s going on down there. It’s a shame that genital health is still quite taboo and not spoken about much because it really is so important and not worth ignoring for the sake of a slightly red face.
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I spoke a lot on my blog a couple of years ago about my first smear test experience and my experience with having to go for a colposcopy after they found abnormal cells. I also wrote a post with tips for tackling your smear fear! Having anxiety at the time, the whole experience was almost unbearable. So I wanted to ensure other people felt like they could do it too.
Your blood pressure
Something that might seem normal to do at a doctors appointment but not so much at home, right? I’ve actually always thought it was normal to take your blood pressure at home as my Dad has had some blood pressure issues over the years and was advised to buy a blood pressure monitor. We’ve just always had one in the house.
So that’s definitely something worth investing in if you’re really getting serious about your overall physical health. Although it’s a little uncomfortable, it only takes a couple of minutes and can really help you monitor your heart rate and blood pressure and give you a little nudge to go to your GP if you’re worried about your results. Here are 6 more things to consider when you’re starting your fitness journey!