It is a universally acknowledged fact that “Prevention is better than cure”. It’s an adage going around from time immemorial and there won’t be one doctor that would argue against this.
A preventive health check-up is of utmost importance for maintaining good health. Especially in a post COVID-19 world where health check-ups will be paramount for every country and citizen.
Regular health check-ups should be part of one’s fitness routine. It helps you keep track of your health and fitness. It is important for people who have a weak immune system or those who have a lifestyle that makes you prone to health risks.
As a new-born, your parents would probably rush down to the doctor even with the slightest cold, right? That is because babies have weak immune systems and as we grow old, our immune systems also grow weaker. That is why these health check-ups can be handy and give a good insight about our health.
The pros of health check-ups
It is important for us to keep track of our health to lead a healthy and happy life.
Regular health check-ups can benefit us in the long run in various aspects of our lives. For example:
- Medical Expenditure:
Medical bills can eat up your life savings to say the least. Regular health check-ups can help you save in the long run as regular health screening and tests can prevent you from an expensive surgery or therapy later. These screenings are far more cost-effective as hospital medical bills. Yes, there is health insurance, but those also come with plenty of terms and conditions.
- Helps in early detection of diseases:
Preventive health check-ups enable you to catch the disease in its primary stage. For example, a cancer or tumour is curable in the early stages. These can help your doctor to prepare a proactive approach rather than a reactive plan to your diagnosis. These tests are also done on the basis of gender, age, family history and lifestyle choices. These results can show your doctor as to hoe prone are you to certain diseases and how to take corrective measures at the earliest.
Regular blood tests:
Regular blood tests can help you keep track of various infections in your blood like HIV/AIDS, diabetes, cholesterol, coronary artery disease, cancer, high blood pressure, anaemia and cancer. It also helps in monitoring your organs like liver, kidney, heart and the thyroid gland. Based on the status of your reports, the doctor can prescribe you certain medications in order for your body to fight the disease.
Helps in identification of stress related diseases/illness:
In today’s fast-moving world people often forget to take care of their mental health which has led to an increase in the number of stress and anxiety related diseases. Some of the physical and psychological illnesses, which are directly related to anxiety are high blood pressure, hypertension, mental disorders, depression, Alzheimer’s, asthma and gastrointestinal diseases.
- Keeps you up to date with your body:
The reports of these screening will keep your doctor aware of your body’s health and needs. The doctor will act and guide you accordingly.
Some essential tests and screenings include:-
- High blood pressure
- Body Mass Index
- Breast and cervical cancer early detection for women
- Prostate cancer for men
- Dental check ups for adults
- Skin cancer
- Viral hepatitis
- Sexually transmitted disease screening for adults
- Colon cancer screening
- Lung cancer for people who live in polluted areas or smoke
- Immunization schedules for both children and adults.
How often do we need a health check-up?
The need for routine check-ups depends mostly on people’s age and in some cases their lifestyle in general.
For healthy people under 30: once every two years is sufficient. A healthy person indicates a non-smoker and a person who does not suffer from any major disease. Their BMI should be between 18.5 to 24.9.
If you are between 30-50 years and smoke, drink and are overweight, you should opt for a complete screening every year. If not, then once every 2 years is okay.
People over 50 years of age should consider a routine health check up every year or every six months as they are more prone to various health risks.