In today’s fast-paced world, most of us are so busy running after materialistic gains that we often forget the most important thing that really matters in our lives- health! Letting health take a back seat can have dangerous and deadly consequences in the long run. The old adage “Health is wealth” has assumed maximum relevance nowadays. Maintaining one’s health through a balanced diet, regular exercise, disciplined lifestyle is a continuous and life-long process and requires consistent as well as dedicated efforts from the individual. Visiting a doctor and seeking medical advice when we show symptoms of some diseases is common, most healthy people rarely seek medical attention. But some diseases may not show any apparent or immediate symptoms and the seemingly healthy individual can have various underlying health issues. Thus, an annual health check up is indispensable even for apparently healthy people before their health issues spiral out of control.
Annual health check-up – What is it?
- Blood Pressure Tests
- Diabetes Checks
- Cholesterol Level/Lipid Profile Checks
- Lung Function Tests
- Liver function tests
- Kidney Function Tests
- Body Mass Index( BMI)
- ECG, ECHO and Chest X-rays
- Urine and Stool Tests
- For females: PAP smear (cervical smear tests) and Mammography
- Complete Haemogram to detect various types of infections and diseases etc.
The importance of yearly check-up:
#1 Early detection and diagnosis of diseases. This is the most crucial benefit of yearly health checks. If an individual is suffering from any disease or medical condition which he/she is not aware of, then an annual health check-up will enable early detection of that silent disease before it shows symptoms and aids the patient with timely intervention required to cure the disease. This assumes special importance when the individual is suffering from potentially life-threatening diseases such as cancer. Annual health check-ups can save the patient in time before things go beyond control.
#2 Useful interactions with doctors. These check-ups ensure a proper rapport between the patients and their doctors, it also enables the doctors to inculcate healthy lifestyle habits in their patients through proper awareness and education. This directly helps the patient to achieve long-term health benefits.
#3 Curbs Skyrocketing Medical Expenses: If a particularly serious health condition such as cancer is not properly diagnosed and treated in time can lead to huge expenses later. Many people hesitate to undergo a check-up due to the costs involved but what they do not realise is that it can actually save their expenses later which they might not be able to afford. We all know the maxim” A Stitch in Time Saves Nine”. We should remember it while thinking twice about paying for our yearly check-ups. Check –Ups also mitigate the risks of various health problems that will help to prevent the high expenses associated with extensive medical care which might be required in the future if timely health check-ups are not done.
#4 Helps to keep a Proper Medical Track Record. Most people fail to maintain a proper record of all the medical tests, operations and procedures that they have undergone. If they undergo regular annual check-ups, these records will be easily available to them as their physicians will maintain a detailed list of their medical history and can provide the same whenever the patient requires it. And due to the availability of these records the patients will be reminded by their doctors of any potential medication or therapy that they might require for a specific health issue.
#5 Access to Individual HealthCare. Annual health check- ups enable the doctors to provide personalised care to each patient and inform the patients of their potential present and future health risks and devise strategies to avoid the same. Also, the patient’s progress can be properly evaluated through the check –ups and necessary steps can be taken for improvement. Additionally, the physician will be aware of all the medications that the patient is taking and provide useful advice on which medicines are actually required for him or her and which are not.
#6 A key to A Longer and Healthier Life. Last, but not least the various benefits of annual check-ups ensure the timely prevention, diagnosis and treatment of diseases and promotes a healthy and proper lifestyle through proper medical education and health awareness which ultimately helps the individual to stay healthy and active and enjoy a long, wholesome and fruitful life. According to Healthy People, a federal program administered by the United States Department of Health and Human Services, tens of thousands of adult lives are saved by routine cardiovascular tests alone while timely vaccination due to annual health checks saves about 42,000 children in a year. It has also been found to vastly improve life expectancy, especially in the 30-49 age groups.
If you are so busy that you don’t find time for a check-up even once a year or don’t think it is necessary and only involves unwanted expenditure, then you should be knowing that the potential health risks and the mounting expenses that come with it can make your life extremely difficult and make you wish that you had thought about the future and gone for the checkup in time. Health issues and undetected diseases can endanger the very purpose of your life for which you are striving so hard. So you have two choices ahead of you – either start going for a routine annual health check before it’s too late or repents later. The decision is really simple to make but ultimately it’s your life and the choice is yours. Just keep one thing in mind while making the decision- that the right choice can go a long way in helping you achieve your goal in life.