Everyone wants to stay healthy and enjoy a long and active life. Fortunately, preventive care can help you be a proactive and involved participant in your own health and wellness. Here is an introduction to preventive care, what it involves, and why it should be an integral part of your long-term health care practices.
Preventive Care Defined
Preventive care is essentially a way to stay one step ahead of potential health issues before they start. When a patient implements preventive measures, they visit a provider on a regular basis to ensure their body is functioning optimally and any possible problems are addressed in a timely manner. Many illnesses and distressing symptoms can be better managed or avoided entirely with routine visits to a primary care clinic.
Types of Preventive Care
The most common example of preventive care is an annual or biannual health exam, such as a physical or a consultation with your doctor. Patients with personal or family histories of specific issues or illnesses, such as high cholesterol or diabetes, would likely benefit from regular blood work as well. If you have high blood pressure, it's important to check in on a routine basis with a doctor to make certain your levels are staying under control; if necessary, medication can be prescribed.
Certain types of cancer screenings should also be considered for specific patients. For instance, women over the age of 45 can benefit from yearly mammograms. Everyone should have at least one colonoscopy before the age of 50, and if no polyps are present, you should arrange to have one every 10 years. Discuss with your doctor any potential risks you face and how to best manage them.
By making preventive care a priority, you are investing in your long-term well-being. The primary care professionals at Santiam Hospital are here to help you on your health care journey. They offer a variety of preventive services, including exams, blood work, diagnostic imaging, and many other types of specialized care to patients throughout the mid-Willamette Valley, OR. Call (503) 769-2175 to schedule an appointment, or visit them online to learn more about their services.