The Importance of Prevention

Prevention and proper screenings are important to your health and can help you treat potential health problems before they develop or worsen. It’s important to have a primary care physician that you can see for regular check-ups or when you get sick. You should have regular check ups about once every two years or as your doctor advises.

How often should you have preventive screenings?
While many preventive tests should be done regularly, you should discuss your screening schedule with your doctor. The tests and the frequency you need them will depend on your age, health status and family history.Blood pressure – Get tested at least every 2 years. If your blood pressure is above 120/80, you may need to get tested more often.

Cholesterol – Discuss with your doctor how often you should have your cholesterol tested. You may need to be tested more frequently if your total cholesterol is above 200 mg/dL or if you are at increased risk for heart disease based on your health or family history.

Colorectal Cancer Screening – Starting at age 50, you should get screened for colorectal cancer. Talk to your doctor about how often you should be tested and which method, such as a colonoscopy, is best for you.

Diabetes – Starting at age 45, get tested every 3 years. Before age 45, discuss with your physician how often you should be tested. If you have symptoms of diabetes, see a doctor right away.

Oral Health – Brush your teeth twice a day and replace your toothbrush every three or four months. Visit your dentist regularly for cleanings and check-ups.

Eye Health – Get an eye exam every one to two years, or as recommended. If you wear glasses or contacts, you may need to have more frequent check-ups. Regular eye exams are important if you have diabetes, as you are at greater risk for eye complications.