An extended family sitting on a sofa near a white Christmas treeThe holidays are a wonderful time to enjoy delicious food and talk with family members. As you gather this holiday season, why not focus on your family’s health and collect a family health history?
What is a family health history?
Family health history is a written record of information about your family’s medical conditions, lifestyles, behaviors, and environment.
Tracing the illnesses suffered by your relatives, such as diabetes, heart problems and cancer, can help your doctor assess your risk for certain diseases and recommend actions to keep you and your family healthy. In addition, a family history of a genetic disorder, like sickle cell disease, can mean the condition is in your genes, and can possibly be passed on to your children.
How do you collect your family health history?
Talk with your family about their medical conditions, including diagnoses and symptoms. Keep a written record, and update it as needed.