Why making “that” doctor’s appointment should be your health goal for 2023
Most of us can relate: There’s that minor pain or throbbing sensation somewhere in your body that has made you, at least once, think, “I better check this out.” Or maybe you already know the diagnosis, but have postponed follow-up care for diabetes, high blood pressure, a mental health issue, or an addiction.
Yes, the pandemic has disrupted primary care and caused people to postpone health care unrelated to the virus, but many people have long shunned preventative health care. Some reasons for avoiding a visit may include, but are not limited to:
- Fear of medical bills.
- Limited time or feeling too busy with work or family life.
- Negative past experiences with a medical provider, including racial bias and weight shaming.
- Lack of access to health care.
- Fear of medical diagnoses and health care anxiety.
- Avoiding care after participating in activities that carry a greater health risk, such as heavy alcohol consumption.
The heavy hand of procrastination doesn’t discriminate when it comes to our health, but your health and well-being are the last things you want to minimize or put off. And while thesmartwatches and new health gadgets can offer great insight into what might be going on in our bodies, a signal that something is not quite right only makes sense if you act on it and find the right ones care.
Here’s why you should get a medical this year, which screenings might be best for you, and how to save money if you don’t have a regular doctor.
Coping with Medical Anxiety
Some people suffer from health anxiety, and a sense of urgency about their health can cause them to take more trips to the doctor than they need. But on the other side, there are people who delay getting tested or going to a doctor because they are afraid of the results or they are afraid of being judged by their doctor.
According to the Cleveland Clinic, up to one in three Americans avoid medical care, even when they suspect they might need it. This is for a variety of reasons: fear of catching a virus at the doctor’s office, fear of getting bad news about your health after using substances like drugs or alcohol, fear of being diagnosed with cancer, and more. again.
The first step to overcoming worries like these is to reduce the root of fear. Are you worried about the results of the blood test? Imagine feeling relieved once you get your results, knowing that the same blood is flowing through you whether or not you show up for the test. Other people may have an easier time going to a medical appointment when someone else goes with them, when they book a telemedicine appointment instead, or when they tell their doctor exactly what they are afraid of. .
Do you need a primary care physician?
Having a primary care doctor is a great benefit when it comes to general well-being and preventive care. It’s helpful to have a provider you feel comfortable sharing your health details with and who can recommend specific activities or diets and order tests if needed, all based on your medical condition. individual. If you have insurance, it’s worth shopping around for a primary care physician. Start by calling your health insurance company or using their online resource “find a doctor who accepts my insurance.”
If you do not have a regular doctor or are unable to establish a new relationship with a doctor, some of the screenings we discuss below may be offered at local health clinics or centers without appointment. These establishments may accept upfront payments in lieu of insurance and may be cheaper options for the uninsured.or virtual appointments may also be an option, but check ahead to make sure the service will accommodate what you want.
Here is more information aboutand here when you are insured.
Screening for the most common causes of premature death: high blood pressure and diabetes
If it’s been a while since you’ve been to the doctor and don’t know where to start, getting your blood pressure and blood sugar checked is a good start. Heart disease and diabetes are among the top chronic diseases in the United States, and both can lead to complications leading to premature death.
High blood pressure, or hypertension, often has no symptoms, and people can go years without realizing that their blood pressure is dangerously high.
Cancer was the second leading cause of death in the United States in 2020, behind heart disease, according to the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Screening for cancer helps find it early, when treatments are most effective. Some cancer screenings, such as the Pap test for cervical cancer and colorectal cancer screening, detect precancers, which can be removed before they turn into cancer.
The cancer you should be screened for depends on your age, family history and individual risk factors, but the five most common cancers in 2020 were breast, lung-bronchi, prostate, colon-rectal and the skin (melanoma).
- Most people should start colorectal cancer screening at age 45.
- Mammograms for breast cancer are generally recommended for people in their 50s, but some people would benefit from getting tested earlier – for example, if there is a history of breast cancer in their family .
- You should be screened for skin cancer if you notice a new mole or spot that looks different in color, asymmetrical in shape, or otherwise.
- Screening for lung cancer requires a low-dose CT scan and is recommended for adults with a long history of smoking.
- Screening for prostate cancer includes a blood test called a PSA test, and most men will benefit from a prostate test in their 50s and 60s, according to Johns Hopkins Medicine.
Finding mental health care as an adult
Feeling sad or hopeless, being unable to cope with everyday stress, feeling like a burden on others, or feeling excessive worry are all symptoms of a mental health disorder like depression or anxiety. . The more researchers learn about the brain, the better they understand how mental health is an extension of our physical health and impacts our physical health; home and work life; sense of well-being and more.
If you’re an adult who’s never tried it before, finding a therapist or someone to talk to can seem daunting, but you probably have more options than ever before, thanks to virtual services and a growing awareness of Mental Health. here is a and here are some tips for finding mental health care when you’re .
The information in this article is for educational and informational purposes only and is not intended to constitute medical or health advice. Always consult a physician or other qualified health care provider with any questions you may have about a medical condition or health goals.