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3 Signs You Should Visit Your Primary Care Doctor
Your primary care doctor is a valuable resource for keeping you healthy. Regular appointments with your doctor are important for both the prevention of illness and the management of your health. In this article, we’ll take a closer look at the benefits of seeing a primary care doctor along with three key signs it may be time to make an appointment with yours.
Benefits of seeing a primary care doctor
Primary care doctors provide preventive care services, manage chronic conditions, and provide health education and referrals to specialists when necessary. According to the Cleveland Clinic, a relationship with a primary care doctor keeps one healthy and lowers medical costs. In addition, working with a primary care doctor helps people live longer and enjoy a higher quality of life.
When you should visit your primary care physician
Because each person’s health situation is unique, there is no set rule for how often one should see their provider. However, the following are some key signs it may be time to schedule an appointment.
It has been a while
Generally, adults in good health should have an annual checkup once every three years if they are under 50 years of age. However, adults over 50 should have an annual checkup at least once a year. In addition, those with certain chronic health concerns or who are on certain medications may want to see their primary care provider more often, regardless of age.
How often a patient sees their provider should be something the doctor and patient decide together, but regular checkups are crucial. If it feels like some time has passed and one’s lifestyle and health situation has changed, it is a good idea to make an appointment. Going too long without seeing one’s primary care provider may lead to vaccinations being out of date and worsening health conditions.
Onset of new symptoms
It can be tempting when unusual symptoms arise to try and wait them out. However, if symptoms do not seem to resolve with home care or appear to be worsening, try to see a primary care provider as soon as possible. The doctor can examine one’s symptoms while considering their health history and lifestyle and help pinpoint the cause and provide the necessary treatment. With most health conditions, the sooner treatment begins, the better the outcome.
Unexplained weight loss
Though many consider weight loss a desirable outcome, unexplained weight loss can indicate a moderate to serious health problem. Sudden weight loss can result from anything from a health condition or a new medication to a sudden change in diet and exercise. However, according to the Mayo Clinic, losing 5 % of body weight in a 6 to 12-month period without trying could be a sign of trouble. Possible conditions behind unexplained weight loss include:
- Thyroid problems
- Gastrointestinal issues
A primary care provider will likely recommend tests to determine the underlying cause to begin the appropriate treatment.
Be proactive about your health
A primary care provider can help you live a long and healthy life. However, keeping regular appointments and not waiting to seek help when problems arise is important. Call our office today to learn more about the benefits of primary care.
Request an appointment here: https://eldridgeclinic.com or call Eldridge Family Clinic at (281) 946-1351 for an appointment in our Houston office.
Check out what others are saying about our services on Yelp: Primary Care in Houston, TX.
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