6 Questions to Ask During Your Annual Physical
It’s not a test, but it’s definitely an event you want to be prepared for. It’s the annual physical with your medical provider. For National Heart Month in February and beyond, we’re sharing key questions to help you get the most from this important appointment.
A Bit of Preparation Can Go a Long Way
It can sometimes take a little nudge to schedule an annual physical. So when you finally take that step, it’s important to maximize your visit. For National Heart Month and beyond, we’re helping you make the most of that critical appointment with six questions to ask your medical provider.
1. What Vaccines Am I Due For?
Vaccinations don’t stop when you’re 18. Ask your doctor what regular or special vaccines you may need and when, based on your age, health, and any travel plans. Afterward, the front office can work with you to schedule any applicable immunization appointments and send convenient reminders.
2. What Types of Exercise Do You Recommend?
Nearly every aspect of health — heart, lungs, muscle strength, circulation, brain function, and more — can benefit from regular exercise. Conversely, hearing loss and certain other conditions may be associated with decreased physical activity. An exercise regimen that is tailored to you can support your health goals.
3. How’s My Hearing?
Though age can be a strong predictor, hearing loss doesn’t have to be inevitable as you get older. Eating healthy, avoiding excess noise, keeping cotton swabs and other objects out your ears, and scheduling regular hearing evaluations can help you preserve one of your most precious senses.
4. What Health Issues Am I at Risk For?
The health issues that should be on your radar can vary with age, race, lifestyle, family history, and sex. Some conditions, such as heart disease, diabetes, smoking, dementia, and even falls, can go hand in hand with hearing loss. Your doctor can help you practice prevention or proper management.
5. How’s My Mental Health?
If you’ve been feeling a lack of energy or drive, experienced a change in mood, or noticed that you’re withdrawing from social engagements, it might mean a range of issues tied to mental, emotional, or physical health — even hearing loss. Having a frank chat about it is the first step to effective solutions.
6. What Is This?
Have a weird tic? A clicking sound when you walk? Maybe your elbow hurts, there’s a new spot on your skin, or your vision isn’t quite the same recently. This is a good time to ask about those issues that may have presented since your last annual visit. Be sure to write them down ahead of the appointment.
Having a frank conversation with your health care provider is the first step to finding an effective solution.