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Make Primary Care Well Visits Part of Your New Year’s Resolution

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  • Written By: Frederick Health
Make Primary Care Well Visits Part of Your New Year’s Resolution

The goal of New Year’s resolutions is to focus on ways to improve our lives in the coming year. There’s no better way to improve your wellness than by making Primary Care well visits a part of your yearly routine.

Many people think you don’t need to a see a provider unless you’re sick, but that’s not true. Getting annual well visits can help your doctor learn about your unique medical, family, and social history and how those factors affect your health. In fact, there are many reasons why you should get an annual wellness exam.

Be Proactive About Your Health

An annual well visit is a great way to learn about your current and future health. With help from your provider, you’ll know when something is not right and learn more about the symptoms related to your current conditions—and what to do if they worsen. You can also learn more about the signs and symptoms to look out for when it comes to conditions or diseases you may be at risk of. If any issues arise, your provider will have updated records to look back on to get you help when you need it.

You can also take this time to talk to your provider about any wellness goals you may have. Your provider can give you tips on how to reduce stress or anxiety, eat healthier, or add more exercise into your routine.

Prevent Illnesses

Even if you feel healthy, there still could be underlying issues that you may not know about. For example, high blood pressure can be fatal, but most people have zero symptoms. If you don’t see your provider regularly, you may not know you have high blood pressure until it’s too late.

Preventive screenings help detect health issues before they progress. Your provider can recommend certain screenings based on your personal and family medical history, risk factors, and lifestyle.

While screenings vary person to person, there are screenings and tests everyone should get on a regular basis.

For everyone:

  • Diabetes screening: Men and women 45 and older should receive either a fasting plasma glucose test or a random plasma glucose test every three years to detect diabetes.
  • Colorectal cancer screening: Men and women ages 50 to 75 should be screened for colorectal cancer yearly. In some cases, those aged 75-85 should also be screened.
  • Cholesterol screening: Regular cholesterol screenings can reduce your risk of developing heart disease. Starting at age 20, all men and women should have a lipid panel test performed every five years. If you’re at high risk for heart disease, you should have this test done more frequently.
  • Hypertension screening: Everyone should have their blood pressure checked yearly, or more frequently if you have a history of high blood pressure or heart disease.

For women:

  • Breast cancer screening: Women should get screened for breast cancer yearly via a mammogram for women 45 to 54 and a physician breast exam for women in their 20s and 30s. All adult women should perform a monthly breast self-exam to check for lumps or anything unusual.
  • Cervical cancer screening: Women ages 21 to 65 should get a cervical cancer screening every three years. After age 30, women will receive an HPV test with their cervical cancer screening.
  • Osteoporosis screening: Women 65 and older should get a bone density test yearly to check for signs of osteoporosis.

For men:

  • Prostate cancer screening: Men aged 50 and older should get screened for prostate cancer yearly. If you’re at increased risk of developing prostate cancer, you should begin screenings earlier.

To learn more about these screenings, check out our Health Maintenance Checklist.

Keep Your Immunizations Up to Date

During your well visit, your Primary Care provider can tell you all about what vaccinations you might need. This can include vaccinations for flu, pneumonia, HPV, tetanus, COVID-19, and more. If you have health conditions such as diabetes, heart disease, or lung disease, your risk of severe illness from vaccine-preventable infections increases. Staying up to date with your immunizations protects you and the people around you from illnesses, hospitalizations, disabilities, and death from vaccine-preventable diseases.

In 2022, put your health first by getting a yearly well visit at Primary Care. Schedule your appointment today.