Putting together a list of your family's medical history can help your doctor significantly understand your own health better. On top of this, having a list of your family's medical history can be passed down to help your future generation's health, as well. Here's what you need to know about your family's medical history and how you should be gathering it:
- Include Your First-Degree and Second-Degree Relatives: Your first-degree relatives include your parents, siblings, and children. These family members have the most direct influence on understanding your own health and what you have a high risk of. Your second-degree relatives include your grandparents, aunts, uncles, nieces, nephews, and grandchildren. These family members still have an impact on understanding your own health although their health problems don't put you at as high of a risk as your first-degree relatives do.
- Information About Your Relatives Health: Once you understand who your first and second-degree relatives are, you can write down the information of those who have suffered any major illnesses or had any major surgeries done. You want to write down these relatives date of brith, date of death, what their illness or surgery was, and the date and age they were diagnosed.
- Write Down Relatives Health Habits: Writing down health habits of your relatives is going to help determine how much you are at risk for whatever illness they suffered. For example, if your uncle had lung cancer, but he smoked three packs of cigarettes a day, then that means your risk is lower unless you have the same smoking habit.
- You Are More at Risk if Family Member was Young: If you have a relative who was diagnosed with an illness at a young age, then this means that there is more of a chance that the illness is heredity.
- Your Doctor will Take This Information Into Account: By having all of this family medical information written down, your doctor will be able to determine whether or not you need to have screenings and tests for certain medical problems sooner than what is otherwise recommended. This will ensure that if anything that may be heredity is caught early, you have more of a chance of recovering from it.
As you can see, understanding the importance of your family's medical history will ensure that you and your doctor are better able to take care of your own health in a more specialized way. Talk to places like Urgent Care for more information.