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4 Reasons to schedule an annual exam

4 Reasons to schedule an annual exam

When you’re healthy, feeling well and have never experienced a major medical issue, visiting a doctor isn’t something you usually think about. Do you really need to make time for an annual checkup? The answer is yes!




1. Check your overall health and establish a baseline.

An important benefit of having a regular physical is the information that you and your doctor learn about your current health and potential risk factors for disease. Starting with your first exam and continuing year after year, annual check-ups help establish a “health baseline” that helps your doctor spot unhealthy trends early, before they become serious risk to your health.


2. Keep up on important preventative screenings.

Keeping up with routine preventative screenings can increase the chances of detecting cancer in the earliest stages when it’s most treatable. Your annual physical is designed to meet your needs based on your current health, medical history, lifestyle and recommendations for your gender and age group.

Your doctor will consider your age and risk factors during your annual physical exam and may recommend routine preventive screenings, including those for skin cancer, breast cancer, cervical cancer, colon cancer, prostate cancer, or lung cancer.


3. Learn about your chronic disease risk.

When it comes to avoiding a preventable chronic illness, an annual check-up is key. Three in five adults in the United States live with a chronic illness. Chronic conditions like heart disease, diabetes, kidney disease, and lung disease are leading causes of death and disability for both men and women. Having a yearly physical allows your doctor to:

  • Assess your current risk factors for chronic disease.
  • See any changes in your health that have developed since your last exam.
  • Talk about lifestyle choices that contribute to your risk.
  • Create goals and recommend changes.


4. Build a relationship with your doctor.

Your primary care provider is your healthcare partner. Building a relationship with a primary care provider keeps you healthier. Having time with your doctor when you’re not sick is a great way to get to know your doctor and allow your doctor to get to know you. An annual exam also provides time to address any concerns or answer questions you may have about medications, treatment plans, or other health issues.


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