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The four dimensions of women’s health

This is part one of a two part series. Read part two.

People that identify as female, or were assigned female at birth, have unique health needs that can change during the course of their life.

Learn how to prioritize your health with these five often-overlooked physical and mental health tips:

1. Start with your heart health

Heart disease is a top health issue for women and closely correlates with factors such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and physical inactivity. You can help keep your heart healthy through at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise per week — just slightly over 20 minutes a day.

2. Speak to your doctor about cancer screenings

Having female anatomy doesn’t increase your risk of cancer, but breast cancer, ovarian cancer, and cervical cancer are unique possibilities for people with breast tissue, ovaries, or a cervix, respectively. 

Access to primary and specialist care can help you take the right steps towards booking a cancer screening appointment. Through TELUS Health Virtual Care, you may be able to seek advice on cancer screenings in general, or where appropriate, and get a referral for a screening without having to visit a doctor in person.

3. Find the right support for hormonal or gynecological conditions

In a 2022 Women’s Health Magazine reader survey, 57% of respondents with a hormonal or gynecological condition — including fibroids or perimenopause — said it had harmed their careers. One British study found that 28% of people with endometriosis felt compelled to leave their job, while another estimates the condition interfered with advancement prospects for 40% and impaired job performance for 50%.

Women deserve the time they need to put their health first. And finding support to manage these conditions can be an important part of feeling confident at work. With virtual care, you’re able to access advice from a trusted nurse practitioner and receive referrals to specialists in your local public sector when medically appropriate to meet your healthcare needs.

4. Listen to the changes taking place in your body

Hormone levels fluctuate for everyone. Aging, weight changes, chemotherapy treatments, and surgical interventions can all cause hormone-related symptoms such as cognitive disruption, physical discomfort, and low mood. 

Spend time learning about your company’s policies and support resources for managing these changes. You can also speak with a clinician through TELUS Health Virtual Care to get advice for managing your symptoms, and specialist referrals where appropriate.

5. Turn to counselling if you’re feeling depressed or anxious

Women are twice as likely as men to suffer from depression and anxiety, and part of that can be attributed to differences in hormones, as well as the intersectional pressures women face.

An Employee Assistance Program (EAP) with counselling and other work and life services can help you cope with feelings of anxiety and depression. You can also lean on your TELUS Health Virtual Care portal for quick access to mental health support and the possibility of specialist referrals.

The power of personalized, flexible care

Having autonomy over your health services through a virtual care platform can make a huge difference. It’s empowering to be able to know what to look for, to take charge of your care, and to consider the medical expertise that’s most applicable.

A virtual care platform can provide invaluable, personalized resources. Next month, we’ll explore how else these solutions can help.