It is the process of identifying healthy people who may be at increased risk of disease or condition. The screening provider then offers information, further tests and treatment. This is to reduce associated risks or complications.
Employee/Educational health screening is a term used to describe a range of checks and tests that help identify risks to health and improve wellbeing among staff / students. It has the potential to benefit both employees / students and the organisations they work for / schools they study in.
Lifestyle Management (Prevention & Health Maintenance)
There are a number of lifestyle factors that are known to impact your overall health and well-being.
Alcohol is high in calorie content and low on nutrition. It contributes to weight gain and if you drink too much, too often, it can lead to all sorts of health problems, such as high blood pressure and liver damage. We may all overindulge from time to time, but try not to make this a regular thing. Drinking a lot in one session is never a good thing for your health. There has been a lot of emphasis on young binge drinkers, but if you are female and have one large (250ml) glass of red wine at home each night, you will exceed the government guidelines for safe drinking.
Most people think of exercise solely in terms of weight loss, but it also builds muscles and bones, lifts mood and is a great way of beating stress. If you don't do 30 minutes of walking most days, plus one or two aerobic sessions a week, you aren't exercising enough. If you want to make changes to your routine, bear in mind it takes three weeks to adopt a new habit, so you should draw up a plan that carries you beyond this point.
Most adults need six to eight hours of sleep each night. When we sleep, we rest and our body is able to renew its energy. This may be why a good night's sleep seems to improve the immune system, minimising our risk of illness. Sleep is also important because of dreams. When we dream, we process all the events of daily life. Getting a good night's sleep, therefore, influences our psychological wellbeing.
Smoking causes cell damage, which can lead to illnesses, such as cancer and heart disease. It can also worsen other diseases, such as ulcerative colitis and asthma, and is linked to poor wound healing and premature ageing of the skin, the so-called 'smoker's face'. Smoking stops you absorbing vitamin C and other nutrients. The only way to avoid this damage is to stop smoking and better still, avoid starting in the first place.
We all have an instinctive stress response that releases hormones into our bloodstream when we are faced with danger. These hormones cause instant mental and physical change in us, giving added strength and endurance so we can fight or take flight. Instead of using our stress hormones in emergencies, we live at such a pace that many of us activate them all the time – like when we are going to miss a train or someone cuts us up on the motorway. Most tense people don't give themselves sufficient time and space to rest after each stress-filled moment. With no release, your stress hormones keep on working, which is why there are so many people around who lose their tempers at the slightest provocation. If this sounds like you, make learning how to reduce and cope with stress a priority.
What we drink
Good hydration is essential for mind and body, so make sure you drink plenty of water every day. Not all drinks are equal, so if you need to boost your liquid intake, watch your caffeine (and sugar) levels don't creep up.
The food we eat is used to provide energy for every function in the body, from walking and talking to digesting and breathing. The main types of food – carbohydrate, protein and fats – are important sources of energy. Current guidelines suggest that we should get:
- About 50 per cent of our energy from carbohydrates (cereals, bread, pasta and potatoes)
- 10 to 15 per cent from protein (meat, cheese, soya)
- less than 30 per cent of energy from fats (70g per day for women, 100g for men)
Many of us eat more than this a day. The actual amount of energy you require will depend upon the type of lifestyle you lead. The recommended figures are 2000 calories per day for women and 2500 for men – but you may need less than this if you take little exercise and sit at a desk all day, and more than this if your job involves manual labour.
Occupational health is a multidisciplinary activity aimed at:
- The protection and promotion of the health of workers by preventing and controlling occupational diseases and accidents and by eliminating occupational factors and conditions hazardous to health and safety at work.
- The development and promotion of healthy and safe work, work environments and work organizations.
- The enhancement of the physical, mental and social well-being of workers and support for the development and maintenance of their working capacity, as well as professional and social development.
- Enabling workers to conduct socially and economically productive lives and to contribute positively to sustainable development.
Occupational health has gradually developed from a mono – disciplinary, risk oriented activity to a multi-disciplinary and comprehensive approach that considers an individual’s physical, mental and social well-being, general health and personal development. At LFC, we are committed to educating and supporting this, you are free to speak to any of our doctors for further information.