During the lazier summer days, knowing your health status can help you relax and have fun in the sun this summer and for the rest of the year.
An annual wellness check sets a baseline for your health.
By monitoring your history, vitals, heart, lung function, skin condition, various sex specific tests, and lab results, your provider can form a general picture of your health and outline any steps you need to take to either improve or maintain it.
Almost all annual wellness exams include lab tests to make sure your cholesterol, thyroid, and blood glucose levels are normal. These tests are markers for heart disease, thyroid disease, and diabetes. Depending on your age, your doctor will keep you on track with recommended health screens, including mammograms and pap smears for women and a prostate cancer screening test (PSA) for men. As you age, more health screens are added, including a colonoscopy starting at age 50.
Wellness exams are especially important for children to ensure they are growing and developing properly. Early on, well child exams pinpoint developmental delays giving providers the chance to resolve them quickly. For example, if an infant isn’t babbling or cooing in a timely manner, or an 18 month-old baby isn’t saying several words, they might have a hearing problem. If a child isn’t hearing well, it can delay speech milestones. Vision problems can show up as a delay in fine motor skills.
By seeing you every year, your provider gains a sense of normalcy for you and your kids, making it easier to catch problems early on. It generally takes a provider at least a few visits to fully understand the picture of your health. Once they get to know you, they can give more tailored care. That’s why it’s valuable to choose one primary care provider. Make sure to choose a provider that you trust and feel comfortable sharing your concerns. Castle Rock Medical Center has several family practice providers to choose from, along with a pediatrician.
An annual wellness check is often included in your insurance plan — take advantage soon!
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