Health Exams

Can you remember the last time you had your teeth cleaned? Or how about your cholesterol level checked? Was it last year? Or the year before that?

We tend to put off taking care of health matters until something hurts or breaks. And with stress levels on the rise, you might feel too busy or too preoccupied to get in any of your annual health exams. That plus the rising cost of healthcare and it can be easy to see why health checkups take a back burner. If it isn’t broke, why fix it? Or in this case, if it doesn’t hurt, why bother?

The CDC begs to differ. Regular health exams are essential for preventing problems before they balloon. Screenings and checkups can help pinpoint possible risk factors. They allow you to act before an issue develops into something worse.

Want to know which two health exams you should have this year to protect your health?

Teeth cleaning and a full mouth exam

Are your oral hygiene habits so superb that you never experience plaque buildup? If you answered with an emphatic yes, you can afford to skip a teeth cleaning session every now and then. But for those of us who do not get around to flossing daily, teeth cleaning sessions are essential for getting rid of plaque. As well as keeping gum disease at bay. Mayo Clinic states that regular dental checkups are an essential part of preventative health care for one’s mouth.

Full mouth exams are also an important time to make sure cavities are taken care of when small. Additionally, it is also a perfect time to ask questions regarding past dental work and whether it needs a fine tuning. Am I a candidate for a dental implant?and other questions can reveal steps to take to improve the condition of your teeth and gums.

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Yes, a checkup often means setting aside several hours of your day. You might miss out on work done, or money earned. On the other hand, you could be preventing an illness that could take months or years to recover from.

Worried about the cost of dental work? Keep in mind, a dental bill in the name of prevention will always be cheaper than the one that comes after serious issues have developed.

Cholesterol level screening

The CDC reports that 1 in 3 Americans has cholesterol levels that are too high. High cholesterol levels put you at risk of stroke and other heart diseases. Another factor to keep in mind? High cholesterol usually has no warning signs or symptoms before it is too late.

Over 20 years old? Can’t remember the last time you had your cholesterol levels checked? You might want to make an appointment for that this year. The American Heart Association recommends a cholesterol level checkup every 4 to 6 years. So if you have never had a cholesterol reading before. Or if you can’t remember the last time you saw your numbers, now is the time.

Think that you can’t have high cholesterol because you are as skinny as a rail? The American Heart Association says otherwise. Even those who are thin can be susceptible to high cholesterol.

Naturally, if you are taking precautions to keep your cholesterol levels down, you will be lowering your risk of high cholesterol. However, it is still vital to know your numbers so that you can get medical assistance if your numbers are in a dangerous range.

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Getting your cholesterol tested is a straightforward process. Your doctor will take a little blood and send it to the lab. Prior to drawing blood, you will need to forgo eating or drinking for a period of 9 to 12 hours. Your results will be available to you within a week, or however quickly your lab returns the results. Lab results should be explained to you by your family doctor. Or a medical professional who knows your family’s health history. While the readings provided are important, other factors come into play. For example, whether you smoke, have diabetes, high blood pressure, and your age and sex.

There are a fewtest kits for checking one’s cholesterol numbers at home. These results will likely not be as accurate as what a lab would provide. But may be considered a starting point for getting yourself thinking about this aspect of your health.

Health checkups are an investment of time, energy, and money. But the payoff is in problems averted and a healthier you in the long run.