Preventive health care
Prevention is worth more than cure. This also applies to your health. If you want to prevent, do everything you can to protect yourself from illness and injury. Also, you should go to preventive checkups to allow your doctors to detect health problems early. This will make your life easier.
Here are some of the other benefits of preventive health care.
Most screenings are free to you and are usually included in your insurance coverage, so you don’t have to pay out of pocket. Check with your health insurance provider to see which screenings are included in your coverage.
Early detection of serious diseases
Pre-exams help your healthcare provider treat you proactively. You’ll also be assured that treatments will be more effective if you know what kind of health situation you’re in. It’s best to recognize serious illnesses and other medical problems before they can get worse.
How is preventive health care different from diagnostic care?
Diagnostic care is when your health care provider is already looking for a specific health problem. This is typically required by the results of a preventive health test or screening. For example, if your health care provider asks you to get a blood test because you are showing symptoms of a certain disease. The blood test is used to confirm your doctor’s suspicions. Because the blood test is a diagnostic procedure, it is not covered by your health insurance.
Examples of preventive health care
Annual preventive health checkup
As the name implies, this is performed once a year. During this, your doctor will check all aspects of your health, including your physical and emotional/mental health. Even if you don’t feel anything special, an annual exam will help your doctor identify problems that could become serious later.
This is an annual exam that is typically for women age 40 or older. In addition to a consultation with your doctor, this includes a routine X-ray of breast tissue to look for signs of cancer or other problems. There are even some health insurance plans that cover 3D imaging.
These are usually given during childhood and include boosters when needed. Immunizations usually cover diseases such as polio, measles, rubella, mumps and many others. These are all covered by the parents’ health insurance.
Health care is an important part of keeping you away from serious diseases. That’s why you should make it a regular part of your health routine.
Which preventive examinations are most important for men and women?
Screenings are better than treating the disease when it’s already there. Here are some of the most common and important screenings you should consider.
Colon cancer is the second leading cause of cancer death in men worldwide, according to the American Cancer Society. If you’re approaching 50 or have already passed the half-century mark, you should get screened for colorectal cancer. If colorectal cancer runs in your family, you should get screened even earlier.
The only way to be screened for colorectal cancer is to have a colonoscopy. Don’t worry, despite the procedure you have to go through, a colonoscopy is basically painless and takes less than half an hour from start to finish. If your health care provider finds precancerous growths, he or she can remove them before they become malignant.
Another common cancer that affects only men and can be prevented by early screening is prostate cancer. The problem with prostate cancer is that it is unpredictable. It can develop slowly or be very aggressive.
That’s why you need to detect it before symptoms appear, because by that time prostate cancer may be advanced. If prostate cancer runs in your family, you should get screened as early as age 40.
Abdominal aortic aneurysm
If you are a smoker or used to smoke, you should have an ultrasound to check for an abdominal aortic aneurysm (AAA). This is a weakened part of the aorta that can potentially enlarge and rupture if it gets too big. On the other hand, if you don’t smoke or have stopped smoking for several decades, your doctor will decide if this screening is still necessary.
Folic acid is a type of B vitamin that helps prevent severe disabilities in your unborn child when you are pregnant. Even if you’re not pregnant and planning to become pregnant, you should get checked for folic acid deficiency.
On the other hand, women should still get screened for folic acid deficiency because it can lead to folic acid deficiency anemia, a pretty serious condition.
Cervical cancer screening
The scary thing about cervical cancer is that it usually develops slowly and without any noticeable symptoms. That’s why you should get screened for cervical cancer, even in your mid-20s. Thanks to cervical cancer screening, doctors have found that it has prevented cervical cancer by nearly 70%.
Breast cancer screening
Breast cancer is one of the leading causes of cancer death in women around the world. If you get screened regularly for breast cancer, your doctor may be able to do something if the disease is caught early enough.
If there are many women in your family who have had breast cancer, you should consider getting screened regularly for breast cancer.
Prevention is more cure. Even if you feel well, you should go for regular and early screening to be on the safe side. Take your health seriously and make sure you grow older in good health.