If you’ve ever put off going to the doctor, you’re not alone. Many people tend to see a doctor for a checkup only when serious symptoms start showing. Taking the time to schedule an appointment and visit the doctor’s office when you’re feeling perfectly fine just seems counterintuitive when you can look up your symptoms online, right?
However, there’s value in an annual wellness exam that Dr. Google can’t match. Seeing your doctor for a wellness checkup helps you correct unhealthy habits, enables you to manage chronic conditions better, and puts you on the path to a healthier and longer life.
Why Should You Get an Annual Wellness Exam?
Here’s why getting your wellness exam yearly allows you to take greater control of your health and eventually improve your quality of life.
1. Ask Your Doctor Anything: A wellness exam is perfect for having an uninterrupted discussion with your doctor. Have you observed any new health issues recently? Noticed any lumps in your body? How about your eating or sleeping habits—have they changed as of late? You should be able to freely raise these concerns with your doctor during your wellness exam. Moreover, you can also inquire about any health issues that you may face due to certain factors, such as a new job, weight gain, or a change in your living situation.
2. Update Your Health Records: Your personal health record, which includes your family’s health history, will be updated to take into account any changes since your last visit and the results of your screening tests. Your doctor may also update your list of current medical providers. This will allow your doctor to make more informed decisions about changes to your treatment plan and recommendations to undergo further diagnostic exams or screenings, if needed.
3. Refer You to the Right Specialist or Ask for Further Testing: During your wellness exam, your doctor may detect certain changes that could indicate an underlying health condition or potential chronic illness in its early stages. They may also screen you for possible cognitive issues. Depending on their assessment, your doctor can refer you to a specialist or ask you to take additional tests. Men might be asked to go through a PSA blood test while women might need a pelvic exam, pap smear, or a mammogram, for example.
4. Correct Unhealthy Habits: At its core, a wellness exam is designed to offer preventive health services. In addition to data from your physical evaluation and medical history, your provider will also evaluate your lifestyle choices. They may ask questions like:
5. Develop a Personal Wellness Plan: After a thorough health risk assessment and armed with the information from your tests, your doctor can now paint a clearer picture of how you can realistically achieve your wellness goals. This also takes into account the changes that recently occurred in your life and the plans you have for the future. Your personal wellness plan may outline lifestyle recommendations and include a list of tests and preventive services you may need.
6. Learn to Manage Chronic Conditions: During a wellness visit, your doctor can also teach you how to better manage chronic conditions like cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and hypertension. Disease management aims to improve your quality of life through your doctor’s guidance, medication adjustments, and treatment recommendations.
Annual wellness exams are an excellent way to ensure that you are in good health. Make sure to follow your wellness plan and contact your doctor if you have any questions.
Article By: Star Medical Associates
Have you been thinking of adding Omega-3 fatty acids to your diet? Well this article I hope, will help with your decision making.
First of all did you know that there are over 11 types of omega-3 fatty acids found in nature. The three main types involved in human physiology are a-linolenic acid (ALA) found in plant oils, eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) both commonly found in marine oils. DHA is the most abundant omega−3 fatty acid in the brain. Common plant sources that contain the omega−3 ALA fatty acid include canola oil, flaxseed, walnuts, broccoli, and spinach. The major source of animal omega−3 EPA and DHA fatty acids is fish.
There is good evidence that omega-3 fatty acids improve joint pain and stiffness in Rheumatoid arthritis (The British Journal of Nutrition, June 2012). Also it appears to protect against dementia, improve mental function and may aid in depression especially manic or bipolar depression (Current Opinion in a Psychiatry, January 2013). In one study of older people with a diet high in omega-3 fatty acids there was a lower risk of developing Alzheimer's disease. (Current Opinion in Clinical Nutrition and Metabolic Care, March 2010). More research is necessary however, to confirm this association.
There is very good evidence that suggests omega−3 fatty acids modestly lowers blood pressure both systolic and diastolic, in people with hypertension, (American Journal of Hypertension, July 2014).
The benefits in cardiovascular disease and cancer is still being researched however on September 8, 2004, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration gave "qualified health claim" status to EPA and DHA omega−3 fatty acids, stating, "supportive but not conclusive research shows that consumption of EPA and DHA fatty acids may reduce the risk of coronary heart disease". It appears that omega-3 fatty acids may prevent plaque build up inside blood vessels.
If you are a vegetarian and do not care to eat fish, you can use omega-3 supplements. One gram per day is recommended for people with heart disease. It is very important to ask your doctor or health care provider before starting this supplement, for high doses can interfere with some medicines or increase the risk of bleeding.
BY RICHARD G. BERRY MD, FACP
THIS ARTICLE DOES NOT PROVIDE MEDICAL ADVICE. It is intended for general informational purposes only and does not address individual circumstances. Always consult your Doctor, PA or FNP for any problems you may be having and for more information about what you have read.
This time of year can be daunting. We are in the midst of flu season, and new strains of Covid-19 are being identified. So what should you do if you get sick?
According to the CDC, most people with flu have mild illness and do not need medical care or antiviral drugs. If you get sick with flu symptoms, in most cases, you should stay home and avoid contact with other people except to get medical care.
If, however, you have symptoms of flu and are in a higher-risk group, or are very sick or worried about your illness, contact your health care provider (doctor, physician assistant, etc.).
Certain people are at increased risk of serious flu-related complications (including young children, people 65 and older, pregnant people, and people with certain medical conditions). If you are in a higher-risk group and develop flu symptoms, it’s best for you to contact your doctor early in your illness. Remind them about your higher-risk status for flu. CDC recommends that people at higher risk for complications should get antiviral treatment as early as possible, because benefit is greatest if treatment is started within 2 days after illness onset.
Do I need to go to the emergency room if I am only a little sick?No. The emergency room should be used for people who are very sick. You should not go to the emergency room if you are only mildly ill.
If you have emergency warning signs of flu sickness, you should go to the emergency room. If you get sick with flu symptoms and are at higher risk of flu complications or you are concerned about your illness, call your health care provider for advice.
What are emergency warning signs of flu?
People experiencing any of these warning signs should obtain medical care right away.
This and additional information can be found at CDC.GOV.
Or follow the link: https://www.cdc.gov/flu/treatment/takingcare.htm
African American Women and Breast Cancer