What are Preventative Screenings?
Many people have heard of preventive health screenings, but may not fully understand what they are. These are tests and screenings that look for diseases before symptoms are present. Preventive screenings are not only cost effective for all those involved, but they also help increase the life expectancy of patients who participate in them. This is because many health conditions have little to no warning signs. Preventive health screenings provide insight about early disease risk so patients can take proactive steps to prevent chronic illnesses and diseases.
Keep in mind that preventative screenings are different than annual check-ups, though your annual doctor’s appointments can help determine which preventive screenings you need. These screenings are done during a separate appointment and possibly by a doctor other than your primary care provider depending on which screening you need.
What Screenings Do You Need?
Which preventative screenings you need are determined by a wide range of things such as your age, gender, ethnicity and the results of your health risk assessment. Since June is Men’s Health Month, let’s focus on what screenings are often recommended for men. Research shows that the top risks for men are cardiovascular disease, prostate cancer, lung cancer, as well as depression and suicide. So, this month is a the perfect time to schedule the following screenings:
- Blood Pressure
- Carotid Artery Screenings
- Prostate-Specific Antigen (PSA) Test
It is important to talk to your doctor during your annual check-up about which preventive screenings are right for you. From there, you can also look into your organization’s wellness program. Many wellness programs have on-site events for biometric screenings, or offer off-site screening options!
Additional Health Tips for Men
In addition to your preventative screenings, this month is a great time to focus on your overall physical and mental health. Here are some tips on getting started:
- Quit smoking (or never start!)
- Begin an exercise regime
- Eat a nutritious and balanced diet
- Practice stress management techniques
- Put a focus on your social health and connect with family and friends
- Reach out to a therapist if you feel yourself struggling to cope with stressors