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But in women, the hormone shift of menopause can cause changes in mood. And illness and heavy alcohol use can make you more likely to be depressed. A simple strategy to boost your mood: Sit less and move more. This can be slower to go after viruses and other outside threats. Aside from natural aging, your genes can play a part, and some health issues -- like high blood pressure, heart problems, and diabetes -- can affect your hearing over time.
If you have concerns, ask your doctor about a hearing test. This means your bones naturally get weaker. To protect them, eat foods that are high in calcium and vitamin D. Weight-bearing and resistance exercises like hiking and lifting weights can also help your bones stay strong. After you turn 50, you start to lose muscle at a faster rate.
Your physical strength can get weaker, too. The best way to stop this slide is to lift weights or do strength training exercises like lunges and squats 2 to 3 times a week. Men may notice it sooner. To stave off t pain and arthritis, start with your posture. When you slouch, you put pressure on your ts. And keep an eye on your weight, since extra pounds can put pressure on your ts. Also, drink lots of water. Once you hit your 50s, your chances of a heart attack go up. Exercise can help keep your heart and blood vessels healthy -- aim for at least 30 minutes of activity most days. Even short walks count.
Cigarette smoke is a major cause of heart disease. Around the time you turn 50, your hair can start to thin and recede, especially for men. It probably will also be turning gray, depending on your ethnic group and your family history.
You also might talk with your doctor about medicines or hair transplant surgery. Any sun damage you had as a carefree kid will now reveal itself. You may see age spots and will need to watch for s of skin cancer. Wear sunscreen of at least 30 SPF every day, and have a skin cancer check each year. Your skin will probably also feel drier and be easily irritated. An unscented moisturizer not lotion can help. They can no longer quickly switch from a faraway focus to an up-close view. The older you get, the more your sight will change, so make sure to get regular eye exams.
As your hormones drop, you might notice things like dry skin, hot flashes, and mood swings. Because the lining of your vagina gets thinner and drier, sex could also be painful. If so, talk to your doctor. Plenty of treatments, from antidepressants to hormone therapy, can help. So can lifestyle changes like getting enough sleep and using lubricant during sex. Yes, your risk for health issues goes up in middle age, but certain tests can spot early s of trouble.
These will likely include a colonoscopy to check for colon cancer. Women also need yearly mammograms, along with a Pap smear every 3 years, and men should be screened for prostate and testicular cancer every 3 years. If a disease runs in your family, let your doctor know. They may want you to have other tests as well.
Preventive Services Task Force. This tool does not provide medical advice. See additional information. It is intended for general informational purposes only and does not address individual circumstances. It is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment and should not be relied on to make decisions about your health.
Never ignore professional medical advice in seeking treatment because of something you have read on the WebMD Site. If you think you may have a medical emergency, immediately call your doctor or dial Healthy Aging Slideshows. Swipe to advance. Up Next Next Slideshow Title.
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Health screenings for women ages 40 to 64