Most people view going to the doctor as a hassle, especially the self-employed. As someone who likely has a demanding work schedule that can span beyond the limits of a traditional 9-to-5, going to the doctor may seem like an unnecessary burden. Work is crazy enough, and the last thing you want to do is give up the little free time you have to go to a doctor’s office.
Here’s the thing: if you wait until you’re already sick to go to the doctor, you may end up spending more time and money on healthcare than you could have if you’d kept things in check. We look at a few reasons why you should go to the doctor, even if you’re not sick.
If you’ve been slacking on visiting your primary care doctor, now is a great time to select one (if you don’t already have one) and begin building that relationship. Why is this relationship important? Having a trusted doctor you visit regularly means you have someone who knows the ins and outs of your medical history and who can help you plan for a healthy future. Perhaps you’ve had a bad experience in the past, but that shouldn’t keep you from focusing on healthy times ahead. Find a doctor that is right for you and who you trust. It could be the start to a beautiful, life-saving relationship!
Another great reason to get in touch with your doctor is to make sure there aren’t any hazardous health risks looming unchecked. It’s especially important to check in with your doctor if your family has a history of high cholesterol, heart disease, diabetes, cancer, or other chronic and serious conditions. Family history could put you at risk, too, and you don’t want to wait to find out. Visiting with your doctor can identify any risks and also help you put together a plan to lower your risk and determine any additional tests you may need.
The body is a complex machine that consists of many interconnected systems that keep it running. Just like an engine, the body needs to be checked from time to time to make sure all systems are running as expected and that everything is in good condition. Things like weight, blood pressure, cholesterol, and other vitals and markers should be tracked and monitored over time. Changes may signal that something is wrong or that something in one’s diet or environment needs to be adjusted.
In addition to keeping your physical body in check, it’s important to keep tabs on your mental state too. Many people are at risk for depression and may not even know it. They may also be at increased risk due to different factors. Since it can be difficult to recognize symptoms on our own, visiting a doctor can ensure we don’t miss something important with our mental health. Routine mental health screenings can detect any warning signs and keep our mental health in check before more serious problems arise.
Health prevention is critical for long-term health. Routine screening tests, lab work, and vaccines can prevent serious issues from occurring later on. Checking in with your doctor to ensure that you’re on track with any health screenings or lab work that may be due is important. At the very least, don’t forget to get your flu shot each year!
Everyone has likely played the (not-so-fun) game of “Google my symptoms.” With the internet and sites like WebMD, it’s easy and tempting to consider yourself a professional and to self-diagnose what could be wrong. Unfortunately, you’re just not qualified. Self-diagnosing based on internet articles alone is not only a bad idea, but can lead to unnecessary worry and fear.
Opt to visit with your trusted primary care doctor instead. She will understand your unique medical history and be able to provide a personalized evaluation that exceeds the limitations of your generic WebMD diagnosis. Schedule an appointment with your doctor so she can paint the full health picture for you — and provide any necessary treatment to keep you in your best health.
Decent plans provide free primary care to members, so you can see your primary care doctor as often as you’d like...for free! We believe in the importance of the doctor-patient relationship and we want to support it. You enjoy same-day, half-hour long appointments and 24/7 direct telephone access to your doctor...and it’s all 100% included in your monthly premium. Ready to get started? Get your free quote.