The majority of us are ignoring our health concerns, new research reveals.
The study, commissioned by Bluecrest Health Screening, and published in The UK Health Gap Report, found that while half of UK adults exercise regularly (48%) and eat their recommended five fruit and vegetable portions a day (46%) in order to maintain a healthy lifestyle, only 28% attend regular medical appointments to keep their health in check.
Almost half of the 1,000 adults surveyed (42%) admitted they would only book an appointment with a doctor if a health concern became more severe.
Only 1 in 5 of the 1,000 adults surveyed cited their health as their number one priority in life despite the average person thinking about it on a daily basis spending 12 minutes a day worrying.
Anxiety about health was revealed to be highest amongst younger age groups with Generation Z, those aged 16-24 year olds spending over a third (32%) more time worrying about their health. This only drops slightly (30% more than the UK average) amongst millennials.
This is an anxiety that affects both men and women – despite men perhaps appearing to be less concerned with their health (13 minutes a day for women, compared to 11 minutes for men.
Only 11% of respondents invest in medical health and screening checks.
Dr. Toby Balcombe GP advisor at Bluecrest Health Screening comments: “As a nation we’re getting better at maintaining and improving our health and wellbeing.
The research shows that many of us invest our time and hard-earned money exercising regularly and eating a varied and healthy diet, but this alone isn’t enough.
“Underlying health problems can sometimes escalate so it’s important that we take a proactive approach to managing our health and not be afraid to tackle health issues head on to prevent them developing.”
FIVE HEALTH ISSUES WE IGNORE BUT SHOULDN’T
Sudden and severe headaches
Yes, some headaches are the result of a heavy night but if you experience an unexpected sudden headache that feels severe, stopping you from carrying out daily tasks is not something that should not be endured.
Headaches like this can be a sign of something more serious varying from a burst blood vessel, meningitis or even tumours and if this is experienced, we advise that you visit a medical professional to investigate further.
It can be easy to sometimes confuse chest pains with indigestion or heartburn and often if you experience some pains following some hot or spicy food then it can be clear what the cause is.
However, if you suddenly experience chest pain, severe pressure in the chest or even in the upper abdominal region it’s advised to seek medical attention to diagnose the problem.
Change in skin
Skin can be a good indicator of underlying health conditions – it’s important to take note of unexpected rashes, blemishes or skin tags.
Naturally, wrinkles will develop as we age, but a sudden increase can also be a sign of protein deficiency.
Kidney problems and high blood pressure can affect the skin and also hormonal problems can cause very dry and itchy skin.
Roughly we lose 100 hairs a day, if this exceeds 125 then this is usually considered more than normal – it is hard to count exact amount but it’s best to understand your average shedding and take note when it becomes noticeable more.
Changes in hair loss, texture or scalp condition can be a result of a number of conditions including protein deficiency, anaemia, thyroid disease and Cushing’s syndrome, which is a rare condition caused by too much cortisol, the body’s primary stress hormone.
If sweating occurs unexpectedly and not as a result of increased activity can be a sign of a variety of health conditions including thyroid problems, diabetes or infection.
A 2018 study also found that heart attack patients experience profuse sweating. If sweating or night sweating develops it’s best to speak to a medical professional to investigate the possible cause.
Bluecrest Health Screening provides affordable and convenient health screenings to both private individuals and corporates across the UK and Ireland.
It aims to help people take control of their health by empowering consumers with clear knowledge about their current health status.
For further information about Bluecrest Health Screening and its services, please visit Blue Crest Screening.