Thousands of people in Lincolnshire will make New Year’s resolutions this January and GPs across the county are urging everyone to think about making choices that will bring positive changes to their health.
Being more active, stopping smoking or drinking less can help to reduce your risk of developing serious long-term health problems such as diabetes and lung disease.
GPs across the Lincolnshire CCGs have named five top resolutions to make a healthier 2020 and a fresh start to the New Year:
Get active, try a new exercise or sport: We could all do with being a bit more active so try fitting exercise into your daily routine. Why not take the stairs instead of using a lift, try an exercise class, get off the bus or tube earlier than your usual stop to walk the rest of your journey or take up a new sport.
Get a check-up: If you are invited by your GP for a routine cancer check don’t put the appointment off. It’s important to remember that these checks, in particular breast cancer screening or prostate cancer screening, can help to find signs of cancer at an early stage, improving the chances of successful treatment.
If you’re aged 40-74, you’re entitled to a free NHS Health Check every five years. It’s designed to spot early signs of developing kidney disease, type 2 diabetes, dementia or heart disease. As we get older, we have a higher risk of developing these conditions. The NHS Health Check helps find ways to lower this risk.
Stop smoking: About one in every two smokers dies of a smoking related disease. This January, join millions of others and give up smoking for good. Quitting smoking is the best thing you’ll ever do for your health. It may seem scary, but there’s lots of free support available to help you go smoke-free. You are four times more likely to stop smoking by using the free support from your local NHS Stop Smoking Service. Find out more at www.nhs.uk/smokefree or visit your local pharmacy for free advice on how to start the New Year smoke free.
Cut back on the amount you drink: Reducing the amount of alcohol you drink will not only make you feel healthier and help you sleep better, it will also save you money. To kick start this why not join in with Dry January, the annual campaign which sees millions of people give up alcohol for the month. You can find out more information and an alcohol impact calculator at: www.dryjanuary.org.uk.
Look after your mental health: One in four people at some point in their life experience problems with mental wellbeing. You don’t need to struggle on your own! steps2change Lincolnshire provide short term therapy for people with common mental health problems. This is a FREE and confidential NHS service for anyone in Lincolnshire over the age of 16 who is feeling stressed, unhappy, depressed, sad, worried or anxious. For more information visit www.steps2change.nhs.uk for a self-referral form or call SPA if don’t have access to internet 0303 123 4000
A Lincolnshire GP said:
“A new year means a fresh start for many of us and if you can make one change such as giving up smoking, drinking less alcohol, eating healthier or exercising more, it’s likely to benefit you for the rest of your life.
“Regular exercise can dramatically improve your health and reduces the risk of major illnesses, such as heart disease, stroke and diabetes.
“Giving up smoking is the single best thing you can do to improve your health. You are four times more likely to give up smoking with professional help, so speak to your GP or pharmacist for advice.”