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How to Prepare for Your Annual Physical

How to Prepare for Your Annual Physical

Your annual physical is an important part of your preventive health care plan. This routine physical helps John Moran, MD, and the team at More MD identify potential issues that can affect your health.

Often, the most complex diseases won’t cause symptoms until they progress to a more serious stage. Through routine physicals, we can diagnose conditions in their earliest stage when treatment is most effective.

When to schedule a physical

Annual physicals are preventive exams that you schedule once a year, even when you’re feeling well. You should continue having these physicals every year throughout your adulthood.

During a physical, our team spends time reviewing your medical history and discussing any changes you have in your health since your last visit. This is a great time to also bring up any questions or concerns you have about your health, your weight, your diet, or your stress levels.

We also evaluate important information about your current health, such as your:

As part of your physical exam, our team physically inspects your body for abnormalities, like skin irritation, organ enlargement, and pain. They also test the flexibility of your joints and the strength of your muscles.

If you have any risk factors for chronic diseases or are receiving treatment for an existing condition, you may also need blood work or other diagnostic testing as part of your physical.

Preparing for your physical exam

To get the most out of your annual checkup, you should take time to prepare in advance of your appointment.

Here are some quick tips to make your next physical more efficient:

Research your family medical history

Your family medical history can have an impact on your health. If you are aware of any changes in the health of your parents, grandparents, or siblings since your last visit, be sure to bring the information with you to your next physical.

This information can provide insight into what type of screenings you need to lower your risk for certain types of cancer, Type 2 diabetes, and other chronic health conditions.

Collect information about your health

If you’ve visited More MD or another medical facility for an illness, X-rays, or other services, since your last physical, make sure to bring along any medical reports or related information to your physical.

These details help our team create a more accurate picture of your current health and medical history, which can be useful for preventive screenings and other health care services.

Coordinate a list of medications

Any medications, including vitamins and supplements, that you take should be listed on a piece of paper. List the name of the medication or supplement, the dosage you take, and how often you take it.

Our team not only needs the information to add to your medical records, but they can also ensure there are no conflicts between the medications you’re taking that can jeopardize your health.

Write down questions

Because you may feel nervous during your physical, you might forget any questions you wanted to ask about your health.

Before your appointment, write down questions or concerns as you think of them. You should also feel free to inquire about any preventative screenings you need based on your own health history and your family’s. 

Preventive screenings for colon cancer, breast cancer, heart disease, and other conditions become more common as you get older. We can provide information about which screenings you need and when.

Review doctor instructions

If you’re having blood work or other diagnostic testing, you may need to follow certain instructions ahead of your appointment. This ensures the results of your test are accurate and reliable.

For instance, if you’re having blood work to check for diabetes, you may need to not eat or drink (fast) for so many hours before your test.

If you’re scheduled for your annual physical and have questions ahead of time, call the More MD office nearest to you today or book a consultation online.

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