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Women’s health: How to include self-care in your daily routine

Different scams cost $22 million to the culturally and linguistically diverse communities in Australia in 2020 Source: Getty Images/Peter Dazeley

Taking care of one's physical and mental health paves the way for better holistic well-being down the track. But it's not always easy to do so, especially for women juggling career and household responsibilities. But here's how you can include self-care in your routine.

Logan-based mother of three boys, Fatimah Haase, was not in a happy place working full-time whilst struggling to manage her young family. Desperate for a change, she joined an intensive week-long personal development program and realised that she needed to take care of her own wellbeing.

“I was very overweight. I felt really tired and I felt like every day was a chore. Oh, I gotta get up, I gotta get the kids ready for school, I gotta do this, I gotta do that. I am giving so much of myself to everybody around me except for myself and I felt that need to raise my standards.”

Dr Mey Lee Wong is a GP with Jean Hailes for Women’s Health, the presenters of Women’s Health Week. She likens self-care to putting an oxygen mask on yourself before helping others.

“We know that women often do carry invisible burdens including the mental burdens on themselves. If that is not well adjusted, it can manifest itself in a lot of physical ailments and being unwellness. If a woman keeps themselves well everyone else around them benefits.”

A recent Victoria University study on the state of self-care in Australia shows that up to 80 per cent of heart disease, stroke and type-2 diabetes and over a third of cancers could be prevented by better self-care – by doing things like regular exercise, healthy eating and quitting alcohol and smoking.

Dr Wong says self-care means looking after your mental health as much as physical health.

Click on the player at the top of the page to listen to this audio in Punjabi.

People in Australia must stay at least 1.5 metres away from others. Check your state’s restrictions on gathering limits.

If you are experiencing cold or flu symptoms, stay home and arrange a test by calling your doctor or contact the Coronavirus Health Information Hotline on 1800 020 080.

News and information is available in 63 languages at sbs.com.au/coronavirus

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