Getting an annual check up doesn’t seem like a lot of fun, does it? While it's not something that most people look forward to, it is extremely important. Getting an annual check up is good for your long-term physical and mental health. It is also your chance to confide in your physician. It is important to tell them your previous medical encounters, and if you’re currently experiencing medical issues.
You may ask, “If I am healthy, then why do I need to go?” The key word here is: prevention. While you may have previously only consulted a doctor when you were sick, getting an annual check up even when healthy ensures that you are, in fact, healthy. This could prevent some medical issues from arising.
What Can I Expect at an Annual Check-Up?
An Overview of Your Medical History.
Your physician will ask you questions about your past physical and mental health. It is essential that you speak up about all aspects of your medical history. The more information they have about you, the more they can help you when you need it most.
Some people might omit disclosing certain elements of their medical history to their physician. They may be embarrassed about a past medical issue, or they are forgetting a past occurrence. It’s important to be as thorough as possible with your physician. Your medical history can help tell a lot about your current and future health.
Discussing Lifestyle Behaviors.
At your annual check up, prepare for questions such as, “Do you smoke?” Or, “Do you exercise frequently?” While it may seem like interrogation to some, your physician is trying to gain a holistic understanding of who you are as a person. Some people’s lifestyle choices reflect their physical and mental illnesses.
Questions about your sexual health, diet and exercise routines, or alcohol and substance consumption are not intended to judge you. The answers to these questions will help your physician treat you in the most effective ways.
Vital Signs and Examinations.
Your physician and their medical assistants will spend some time checking your vital signs and giving you a physical exam.
- Blood Pressure: A normal blood pressure is 120/80. If yours is 130/80 or higher, your physician might notify you about it. Your blood pressure may also be considered low. Any signs of too low or too high of blood pressure will be discussed.
- Respiration Rate: Breathing over 20 times per minute can indicate certain problems with the lungs or the heart. For an adult, a normal respiration rate is 12 to 16 breaths per minute.
- Height and Weight: You can expect for your height and weight to be recorded and documented at your annual check up. This will be monitored over time.
- Heart Rate: While some heart rates may be higher or lower, a heart rate between 60 and 100 is considered normal. Some people have heart rates much slower than 60, but are still very healthy.
- Temperature: While human body temperatures can vary, the average you should expect is 98.6 degrees Fahrenheit. Any higher, and you may have a fever.
- Other exams: Heart, lung, abdominal, head, neck, and other exams for men and women may occur during your annual check up.
Doctor’s appointments are not just for the sick. They are also to help prevent the healthy from becoming sick.
If you are in the Walnut Creek area and need an annual checkup, reach out to BASS Advanced Urgent Care today. Our experienced clinicians will evaluate your overall health and deliver an informative report.