Visiting your doctor semi-regularly (at least every 6 months to once a year) is recommended, especially as you age. According to the CDC, approximately 82.3% of all adults in the US visited the doctor at least one time in the past year. The next time you schedule an appointment with your primary care physician through the JHS Community, there are a few questions to ask to ensure you cover all of your bases while receiving the best care available.
1. Do I Need Any Wellness Checks?
Wellness checks through a Health Care Sharing Ministry go above and beyond simply checking your blood pressure while you are sitting in your doctor’s office. In fact, wellness tests have been significantly expanding in the past decade alone. Today, some wellness tests to inquire about when seeing your doctor might include:
- Kidney function
- Blood pressure
- Blood sugar (fasting)
- Cholesterol for heart health purposes
- Liver function tests
Discussing wellness checks regularly is essential for preventative care and to catch any potential issues and illnesses and diseases such as cancer or diabetes as early as possible.
2. What Are My Greatest Health Risks?
Health risks vary with each individual. Most often, health conditions, issues, and ailments are triggered by genetic and environmental factors. Speaking with your doctor one-on-one is a great way to discover more about your individualized needs based on your current height, BMI (Body Mass Index), cholesterol levels, and any pre-existing conditions that you may already have personally. Some health risks to inquire about may include heart disease, stroke, diabetes, Alzheimer’s, and other potentially lifelong and life-threatening conditions.
3. What Are My Blood Sugar Levels?
In addition to inquiring about traditional wellness tests, it’s important to ask about your blood sugar levels, both non-fasting as well as your fasting blood sugar levels. If you have a family history of diabetes or metabolic disease, your doctor can direct you to seek out the assistance of an endocrinologist or another specialist who can assist with the testing and/or treatment you require. Blood sugar levels are important to monitor to prevent the potential formation of Diabetes Type 2 and other hormonal and metabolic disruptions.
4. Can You Explain My Test Results and Diagnosis?
Oftentimes, patients can feel left in the dark if they do not understand their diagnosis or the test results that have been presented in front of or given to them. If you’re unsure about what your actual diagnosis from your doctor means or if you are curious about learning more, do not be afraid to ask your doctor directly. Asking your doctor for an explanation of your test results/and or diagnosis is one of the best ways to gain valuable insight into your condition or the results you receive. Whether you are interested in learning more about genetic predispositions you need to monitor or if you are curious about an existing condition you struggle with daily, your doctor should be willing to elaborate in order to help you better understand across all fronts.
5. How Often Should I See You?
Based on recent test results that your doctor has ordered and administered, your doctor should be able to tell you the appropriate amount of time to wait until scheduling your next appointment. If you have underlying conditions, pre-existing conditions, or even chronic illness, your doctor may request that you schedule a doctors visit more regularly than one who does not require ongoing checkups and tests or bloodwork.
6. Can My Family History Impact My Health? If So, How?
It’s important to take your family’s health history and genetic predispositions whenever you are visiting your doctor or requesting a wellness check (including a thorough bloodwork workup). If you have a relative who suffers from chronic illness, autoimmune diseases, or has a history of heart disease and/or cancer, it’s important to consider genetic testing or inquiring about your family’s history and your individual risks.
7. I Have Concerns About a Particular Issue. What Is Your Best Advice?
Whether you are struggling with a new mole that you have recently discovered somewhere on your body or if you are having difficulty managing a chronic issue such as blood pressure, IBS, or even diabetes, talk to your doctor directly regarding your specific needs and concerns.
Utilize the Advantages of Your Health Care Sharing Ministry
JHS Community offers a wide range of benefits for you to take advantage of and better take care of yourself. If you’re not able to visit your primary care physician in person, we provide an MDLIVE program, which enables you to access a network of state-licensed primary care physicians 24 hours a day, seven days a week. You can ask your doctor any of the questions above, too, to improve your health as much as possible.
Feeling comfortable with asking your physician questions during your next doctors visit is essential in order to advocate for yourself and for your loved ones. Staying on top of your own physical, mental, and emotional well-being is one of the best gifts you can give to yourself, and it begins with routine and ongoing healthcare. Give JHS Community a call today for more information.