National Women's Health Week

Starts on Mother's Day every year

Your health at every age

Your 40s

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go to your 30s
go to your 40s
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go to your 60s
go to your 70s
go to your 80s
go to your 90s

You're in your 40s! What can you do to live a healthier life?

40s lady

Be healthier with one, or all, of the steps below! Get the conversation started at your next well-woman visit with this list.

A well-woman visit is a yearly preventive checkup with your doctor. It's a time to check in on how you're doing, how you'd like to be doing, and what changes you can make to reach your health goals.

In addition to talking with your doctor or nurse about your health, you may also need certain vaccines (shots) and medical tests. You do not need every test every year!

A yearly well-woman visit won’t cost you anything extra if you already have health insurance. Most private health plans cover certain preventive care benefits, including a yearly well-woman visit, without charging a copay, coinsurance, or making you meet your deductible. If you don't have insurance, you can still see a doctor or nurse for free or low-cost at a health center near you.
It's easy to say you're going to eat healthy, quit smoking, or start exercising, but it's much harder to actually do it! Get started with the personalized recommendations at myhealthfinder.

To live a healthy life:

Every day I will try to:
  • Eat healthy — go to ChooseMyPlate.gov to get started
  • Get at least 30 minutes of physical activity
  • Get at least 7 to 8 hours of sleep
  • Reach and maintain a healthy weight
  • Get help to quit or don't start smoking
  • Limit alcohol use to one drink or less
  • Not use illegal drugs or misuse prescription drugs
  • Wear a helmet when riding a bike and wear protective gear for sports
  • Wear a seatbelt in cars and not text and drive
  • Take 400 to 800 mcg of folic acid (for premenopausal women)
Talk to my doctor at least once a year about:
  • Whether I plan to have children or the right birth control for me (for premenopausal women)
  • Perimenopause symptoms
  • My weight, diet, and physical activity level
  • My tobacco and alcohol use
  • Any violence in my life
  • Depression and any other mental health concerns
  • My family health history, especially my cancer risk
Ask if I need these tests, medicines, or vaccines this year:
  • Blood pressure
  • Cholesterol
  • Diabetes
  • Flu
  • Hepatitis B and hepatitis C
  • HIV  
  • Mammogram
  • Pap and HPV
  • Sexually transmitted infections
  • Tuberculosis
If you are pregnant, prenatal care can also be a well-woman visit. There are also certain tests during pregnancy to check your and your baby's health. Visit our Pregnancy section to learn what you can do before, during, and after pregnancy to give your baby a healthy start to life and to take care of yourself, too.

 

These guidelines are based on recommendations from the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force, the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices, the Women’s Preventive Services Guidelines, the 2015–2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans, and the Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans.