– Many safe and effective birth control methods are available. Ask your health care provider what’s right for you.
start regular prenatal care early in pregnancy. If you are or may become pregnant, take a daily multivitamin with micrograms of folic acid to prevent birth defects. Don’t smoke, drink alcohol or use drugs not prescribed for you.
breastfeeding protects against allergies and infections and makes your baby stronger and healthier. Breastfeed exclusively for the first 6 months – the longer you breastfeed, the better.
children need regular check-ups , starting soon after birth, to make sure they are developing well and to get their vaccinations. keep your child’s vaccinations up-to date!
-PROTECT AGAINST INFLUENZA.children 6 months and older should get a flu shot every year.
-PROTECT AGAINST LEAD POISONING.have your child tested for lead at 1 and 2 years of age.
8. To prevent colon cancer , people 50 and older and other and others at high risk should get a colonoscopy . Colonoscopy is the only test that can prevent colon cancer. It is usually needed only every 10 years.
To prevent cervical cancer, Pap test are recommended at least every 3 years , starting at age 21 ( or within 3 years of becoming sexually active whichever comes first.) Women 65 and older may no longer need Pap test if recent test have been normal.
Girls ages 11 and 12 should get HPV (human papillomavirus) vaccine against cervical cancer. The vaccine is available for girls as young as 9 and for girls and women 13 to 26 who have not been previously vaccinated.
- Heavy drinking or drinking that worries you or your family, friends or co-workers is a problem.
- Any amount of illegal drug use or prescription drug abuse is a problem.
- Help is available! Talk to your doctor or a substance abuse counselor or call LifeNet, a 24-hour confidential hotline (see More Information and Help)
- It’s normal to feel down once in awhile. But feeling down for 2 weeks or more may be a sign that you are depressed .
- Using alchol or drugs can trigger depression or make it worse.
- Counseling and medication can help most people. Talk to your doctor or mental health professional or call Lifenet, a 24- hour cofidential hotline .
- Get tested ! if you have ever had sex or ever injected drugs(even if only once), it is especially important to be tested for HIV. Get an HIV test from your doctor or call 311 to find out where to go.
- If you’re HIV postive , medical treatment will help you feel better and live longer.
- Use latex condoms to protect yourself and others from HIV and other sexually tranmitted infections. ( If you are allergic to latex, use polyurethane or male or female condoms.)
- Get vaccinated against hepatitis A and hepaitis B. If you are a women 25 or younger, get tested for chlamydia once a year.
- Limit the number of people you have sex with to reduce your risk of getting or spreading HIV and other sexually transmitted infections.
- Get your blood pressure and cholesterol checked regularly, and get screened if you’re at risk for diabetes. Ask your doctors about the levels that are right for you.
- Take medication as your doctor prescribes. If your medication cost too much , ask your doctor if it comes in a lower-cost generic form or if you qualify for free medication .
- Maintain a healthy weight. If you are overweight , losing as little as 10 pounds can help lower your blood pressure and make your heart healthier.
3. Physical activity is vital to maintain a healthy body. Get at least 30 minutes of moderate physical activity (such as a brisk walk) at least 5 days a week.
- Eat more fruits and vegetables ( at least 5 servings a day ) and less fat, sugar and salt.
- Avoid regular soda and other sugars sweetened beverages. Drink water instead. New York City tap water is delicious and free.