Scheduling an annual checkup with your primary care provider is an important—and necessary—step in living a healthy lifestyle.
An appointment with your provider isn’t just for when you’re feeling bad; it’s for when you’re feeling good, too.
More often than not, your annual checkup is more of a check-in with your doctor. Maintaining a relationship with your provider makes it easier for them to provide you with the personalized care when you need it most.
At your next checkup, ask the following questions to make the most of your yearly visit:
What screening tests do I need?
Many screening tests aren’t necessary until you reach a certain age. The best way to know if it’s time is to ask your doctor. Some risk-appropriate screening tests include:
- Pap smears (for women)
- Mammograms (for women)
- Thyroid tests (for men and women)
- Prostate exams (for men)
How’s my weight?
Maintaining a healthy weight contributes to living a healthy lifestyle overall. Many health concerns can come from being over or underweight.
Talk to your doctor about your weight can help in keeping you on the right track.
What should be eating?
If you struggle with weight, blood pressure, or have any other health concerns, ask your doctor what you can do to improve your nutrition.
Even if you’re just looking to make a small change, your doctor can provide you with helpful insight and tips to get you where you want to be.
Am I at-risk?
Asking if you are at-risk for any conditions or diseases can put things into perspective for both you and your doctor.
If your current state of health could lead to concerns in the future, take the time at your annual checkup to ask your doctor about what risk you may have.
Having this discussion can let you know where you are now, identify where you need to be, and determine how best to get there with your provider’s help and expertise.
What should I do before my next visit?
This is the opportunity for you to address your health goals and concerns and make a plan of action. Try to view your next checkup as a milestone.
No matter what your goal may be, ask your doctor what you can or should do before your next visit.
How to prepare for your annual checkup
If your annual checkup is right around the corner, follow these simple steps to be prepared for your appointment:
- If possible, arrive early. If not, arrive on time.
- Know the names and doses of all medication you are currently taking, including any other over-the-counter supplements.
- Know your vaccine history and bring a hard copy of your vaccine record to your appointment.
- Bring the dates and results of any screenings and/or tests you’ve had done since your last checkup.
- Lastly, be honest. Being honest about your lifestyle and habits (good or bad) can help your doctor best help you.
Take the first step and schedule your annual checkup, to check-in with your doctor about your health, your goals, and your concerns.
If you’re looking for a primary care provider to begin making annual appointments, check out our Family Medicine team here at Logansport Memorial Hospital.
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