Checkups Every Guy Should GetSep. 24, 2019
Let’s face it — there are many things you’d rather be doing than going to the doctor for a checkup. But taking time to assess your overall health with a doctor each year is important.
Dr. Eleazar Flores, a primary care doctor at Houston Methodist, says men — or women concerned about the health of a husband, father, grandfather, son or other loved one — need to be aware of these recommended checkups and screenings for men.
Sources: National Institutes of Health, American Heart Association and American Diabetes Association.
“Keep in mind that these are general guidelines and you should consult your doctor about the screening tests that may be right for you, as well as a schedule that’s right for you,” Dr. Flores says.
What is an annual physical exam and why is it important?
Since your health and wellness change over time, your annual physical exam is a time for your primary care doctor to:
- Check your vitals, including your blood pressure
- Listen to your heart and lungs
- Perform blood work and any screenings that can help catch issues like high cholesterol and diabetes early
- Remind you about other wellness exams you may need
- Evaluate your mental health
- Discuss your diet and exercise routines
- Review your immunization records
Your primary care doctor can also answer any questions you may have about sleep or snoring, sexual health or other health concerns. He or she will also remind you about other checkups you need regularly, like eye and dental exams.
And don't think you can skip seeing your doctor for several years just because you're young and healthy. Some chronic health conditions, like high blood pressure, prediabetes and high cholesterol, can lurk in the background — and there's no such thing as being "too young" to have a health issue brewing.
Depending on your age and family health history, your primary care doctor may recommend other health and wellness exams, like prostate cancer screening or colorectal cancer screening.
It's also important to stay current on your immunizations — especially COVID-19 vaccines and boosters right now. (Related: COVID-19 Vaccine & Booster Eligibility: A Guide to What's Available (By Age) Right Now)
Everyone should get a flu shot every year, and a tetanus-diphtheria and pertussis (Tdap) or tetanus diphtheria (Td) booster every 10 years.
Your doctor may recommend other vaccines depending on your age and health history, as well as if you have international travel plans.