Get To Know Your Family Health History

Knowing your family’s health records can be a great preventative tool for you and those you love. Letting doctors know about your family’s health history can help them predict disorders you may be at risk of getting, like heart disease and high cholesterol.

According to the Centers for Disease Control, people who have a close family member with a chronic disease may have a higher risk of developing that disease than those without such a family member.

November is National Family Health History Month, so if you happen to spend the holidays with family maybe you can spend sometime discussing health with family members to gather details about their health history.  

Ask Some Questions

Make a list of blood relatives you wish to include in your family health history. Make sure you prepare an outline of the questions you plan to ask.

For example: Do you have any chronic illnesses, such as heart disease, high blood pressure, or diabetes? How old were you when you developed these illnesses? What medications are you currently taking?

Make a Map

After talking with your relatives, map out the main or recurring diseases observed throughout your relatives.

For deceased relatives or those with incomplete health records, try asking other relatives about their health information.

Always stay up to date with births and deaths in the family, this may be time consuming but you will be creating an important medical database.  

Write it All Down

Keep a record of the reported health information, so it’s available when you need to discuss your findings with your healthcare providers.

Keeping a record also ensures you have documentation of your family’s health history. It can also help other close relatives in case they need similar information.

If you find you might be at risk for high blood pressure, diabetes or other diseases, contact a physician to assess your health in order to take preventative action.

Harbin Clinic urges everyone to know their Core 4 Numbers, which include a blood pressure test, blood sugar test, cholesterol and triglycerides test and weight assessment. These four evaluations give you a look at your overall health and wellness and are the first steps towards preemptive healthcare. Knowing if these numbers and knowing if certain diseases run in your family can help you in staying healthy.

To make an appointment with a Harbin Clinic physician, call 888.427.2461.