Annual Physical Exams

A yearly physical updates your care and provides guidance for  reducing your risk for disease. Your doctor can provide you with information and motivation to stop smoking, lose unhealthy pounds, or manage risk factors like high blood pressure.

Without physical exams, a lot of health issues can go unchecked for years or until they become serious problems. The exam gives you a chance to talk to your doctor about any ongoing pain or symptoms that you’re experiencing or any other health concerns that you might have.

An annual visit to the doctor can be considered as the foundation of good care and preventative measures.

Here are 5 reasons why an annual physical is is more important than you may think.

1) Boosts Doctor-Patient Relationships.

2) Physicals Are Important For Illness Prevention.

3)  Helps You Establish Annual Health Goals.

4) It’s the Perfect Time to Update Your Vaccines.

5)  You Can Discuss Any Health Concerns.

Family history and risk factors can determine if you should have screening done earlier than the recommended age.
Screenings that are part of your annual  physical depending on your age, family history and risk factors, for men and/or women include:

Blood pressure, skin cancer, cholesterol, eye exams, diabetes, colon cancer, osteoporosis, breast exam, and vaccinations updated. In addition, it’s recommended that women have an annual  pelvic exam and pap test. Also, you can discuss vaccinations such as influenza, pneumococcal, and Covid-19 vaccines with your doctor.

A tetanus-diphtheria booster vaccine should be done every 10 years.

Age 18-39

Those in this age group should have a physical exam every 2-3 years. They’re known as a “wellness exam” and focus on looking for medical issues. This exam also assesses your risk of future medical problems. Blood pressure should always be taken ) as there are no symptoms for high blood pressure), but the effects of high blood pressure can be serious. You should periodically check your blood pressure. You can have this done at any doctor visit or go to your local pharmacy or grocery store. If your blood pressure is higher than 140/90, consult your doctor.

Age 40-49

As you age, your physical will include screening of cholesterol where the doctor  will look at your LDL level. High levels of LDL, can cause serious health problems including heart disease. This should be tested once a year. If you have family history of high cholesterol, talk to your doctor about beginning testing sooner.

Eye exams should be done every 2 to 4 years after age 40.

Screen for diabetes every 3 years with a blood test. If you are overweight, you should begin screening at a younger age.

Age 50 and over

At age 50 or older it is highly recommended that osteoporosis be discussed and a colon screening be done, especially if you have family history or risk factors such as inflammatory bowel disease, polyps, or ulcerative colitis can have screening done through a stool blood test or colonoscopy.

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