8 serious health risks to be aware of in your 20s

by Melissa Deim

Blackberry girl

It’s no secret that half of those who smoke or chew tobacco will die prematurely because of tobacco use.

There are specific health risks for 20 year olds that you must be aware of. The health risks in your twenties are different than those when you are older but are still very important to pay attention to. This will include female and male health risks for 20 year olds so be sure to share this information with your girl and guy friends.


Both sexes need to be aware of the serious risk of sun damage. You may think that having a brilliant bronze glow is super important, but did you know that melanoma is the leading cancer that men and women in their 20s get. It’s serious stuff people. Don’t let your vanity make you sick. Be sure to get an annual skin check by a dermatologist and report any skin changes to your doctor.

2. HPV

Human Papillomavirus is a sexually transmitted disease that often goes undetected. Unfortunately HPV is the leading cause of cervical cancer in women. You are more likely to have HPV if you have had unprotected sex with more than one partner. Get a pelvic exam and pap smear each year. Also ask your doctor about the HPV vaccine and how it may help decrease your chances of cervical cancer.


Testicular cancer is a serious health risk for 20 year old males. In fact it occurs most often in men between the ages of 20-39. After a man turns 20 he should go in for an annual testicular exam. I’m sure it’s not the most comfortable thing to do, but early detection is key for survival.


It’s no surprise that young adults in their 20’s are at risk for high cholesterol. In fact it is one of the leading health risks for 20 year olds. Not many young adults follow the most nutritious diet. Those foods high in saturated fat wreak havoc on your cholesterol. You may be more active than those older than you, but you are still at a great risk for high cholesterol. Be sure to get your cholesterol checked every few years and make necessary changes to your diet and exercise routine. In case you didn’t know, high cholesterol is a leading precursor to heart disease.


Even young women are at risk for breast cancer. If you have a family history of breast cancer, you are at an increased risk of having breast cancer at some point in your life. That is why it is crucial to start checking for signs of breast cancer early. You should perform a self-exam every month and report any changes to your doctor immediately. Also be sure to go in for a yearly physical so your doctor can also perform a breast exam.


Most tobacco users began in their late teens or early 20’s. Despite all the information against the use of tobacco, the number of users continues to grow. It’s no secret that half of those who smoke or chew tobacco will die prematurely because of tobacco use. Increase your chances of healthy living by quitting now.


Alcohol poses another health risk for 20 year olds. Young adults don’t always drink in moderation, some tend to binge drink which leads to many complications. Binge drinkers tend to act irrational and make poor decisions. These bad decisions lead to drunk driving, violence, and injury. In some cases these alcohol induced choices can lead to death. If you are going to drink, know your limit and under no circumstance should you try to drive under the influence of alcohol.


According to the World Health Organization violence is the leading cause of death among young people. The number of young people that are hospitalized due to violence is alarming. If you are feeling violent rages or a lack of anger control seek counseling to learn how to manage these urges. If you find yourself in a violent relationship turn to your friends and family for support to get out. If you don’t have friends and family to turn to find a women’s shelter or a local church. They can help you too.

It is important to know the health risk for 20 year olds. In most cases, health control in your 20’s deals with prevention and early detection. Starting good habits now and breaking bad habits can give you a good and healthy life. Did you find this list of health risks for 20 year olds helpful?


Read this article in All Women Stalk



Op-ed pieces and contributions are the opinions of the writers only and do not represent the opinions of Y!/YNaija.


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