When our children are young, we can find dozens of resources suggesting the best vaccination schedule. Those early years seem to be filled with countless trips to the pediatrician.
But as we age—or if you’re caring for an aging loved one—it may be more difficult to know exactly when to have certain check-ups, tests, or vaccines.
Five Star Senior Living put together this handy Wellness Check Up Schedule for seniors based on information provided by Medicare, the CDC, and other authoritative resources.
Wellness Visits After 40
Doctors recommend a wellness visit every two years for seniors over the age of 40. During this visit, the doctor will review your personal and family medical history and conduct a basic check-up, which may include:
- Height, weight, and blood pressure measurements
- Vision and hearing tests
- Assessment of your overall health
At this time, you should discuss other necessary medical care, screenings, or preventative health measures.
Preventative Care and Screening Schedule
There are some health screenings both men and women should have, and others that are gender specific.
- Men over 35 and women over 50 should have their cholesterol checked every five years.
- For women a doctor may recommend a PAP test every five years and a mammogram every one to two years, depending on a woman’s risk factors and family history.
- Similarly, men over 50 should have a prostate cancer screening as often as their primary care physician recommends.
Other Important Health Screenings
Depending on risk factors and family history, physicians may recommend a number of additional screenings for older adults. These might include:
- Colon cancer screening
- Hepatitis C test (for individuals born between 1945 and 1965)
- Abdominal aortic aneurysm screening
- Bone density scan (for women over the age of 65)
Recommended Vaccination Schedule for Seniors
Vaccines are another important health tool. Here are a few the experts say are important:
- Every 10 years, men and women should receive a tetanus-diphtheria vaccine.
- Flu shots are recommended annually for seniors and other at-risk individuals.
- Seniors over the age of 60 should receive a one-time Shingles vaccine
- Adults over the age of 65 likely need a pneumococcal vaccine at least once in their life.
Individuals who are immune suppressed or have allergies should speak to their physician before receiving any vaccinations.
Don’t Forget Your Free Annual Wellness Visit
Seniors on Medicare are entitled to an initial “Welcome to Medicare” visit. Your primary care physician will spend time getting to know you, your medical background, and family history through a Medicare-approved questionnaire.
Seniors are also entitled to one free wellness visit a year with no co-pay or deductible through Medicare Part B. Although adults of all ages should visit their doctor at least every two years for a wellness visit, this Medicare-approved annual visit is a good opportunity for seniors on Medicare to ensure their health is on track.
Five Star Makes It Easy
Seniors in a Five Star Senior Living community can enjoy convenient transportation to their physicians, as well as benefit from on-site rehabilitation and wellness services. Contact the community nearest to you to learn more!
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