Boom, you're 40, and baby, you need to take care of yourself
February 3, 1998
Web posted at: 9:31 p.m. EST (0231 GMT)
(CNN) -- The American College of Physicians is warning the baby boom generation to watch its health.
The organization is launching a $5 million campaign about the risk of turning 40.
"Doctors of internal medicine want baby boomers to be aware of the hidden health implications of turning 40 or 50, especially in the pressure-packed '90s," said Dr. Sandra Fryhofer, an internist.
The problem, doctors say, is that baby boomers are just too busy, and they don't take time to take care of themselves.
They emphasize three common mistakes baby boomers are making:
- They dismiss common symptoms of ailments that rarely cause problems when they are young, but could signal something more serious.
- The woman that's taking an anti-inflammatory for her shoulder pain, another pain medication for menstrual cramps and then takes a combination cold preparation for the common cold could be triple dosing on anti-inflammatories, which could be a recipe for an ulcer," Fryhofer said.
- They routinely use over-the-counter medications. With so many different over-the-counter preparations available these days, it's easy to overdose. And that can lead to serious trouble.
- Women overlook the head-to-toe biological changes that coincide with menopause.
"We want baby boomers to take a little time out for themselves to think about their health and maybe to make some changes that will keep them healthy in the future," Fryhofer said.
Doctors say thousands of people wind up in the emergency room every year with medical problems that could have been avoided if they had consulted with their physicians first.
Medical Correspondent Dr. Steve Salvatore contributed to this report