Seeing your primary care doctor every year for a checkup might seem like a chore. When almost 90% of urgent care centers have wait times of 30 minutes or less, why see a primary care physician? Here are a few important reasons you should see your primary care provider (PCP) at least once a year.

Build a Relationship

You might not think about your doctor as someone with who you want to build a relationship, but the truth is that having a good relationship with your doctor just might save your life in the future. Creating connections with your PCP can help them get a better feel for your family history, your lifestyle, and your overall physical health. The better they get to know you, the more likely they are to catch when something is wrong. In addition, having good relationship with your doctor means that you’re building trust with them. It’s important ot be able to trust your doctor with all of your medical concerns, bug and small.

Practice Good Prevention

If you have a family history of cancer or another disease, yearly visits to your primary care doctor can have a big impact on how effective preventative treatment is. If you wait multiple years between checkups, it’s possible that a minor issue will grow into something that now requires extensive treatment. Preventative medicine practices include doing bloodwork, administering vaccines, and checking for hereditary disorders before they become unmanageable.

Update Medical Records

A lot can change in the span of a single year. Maybe you started going to therapy to address mental health concerns or you started a more rigorous exercise program. These are all pieces of information that your doctor needs to know so they can update your medical records. Every little change counts. For example, you might have started eating a more nutritious diet out of concern for your cholesterol. If your cholesterol has improved, then you’ll definitely want that update in your medical record. It’s important to do this due diligence.

When it comes down to it, seeing your primary care doctor once every year is an important step you need to take for your health. Don’t let these appointments slip by the wayside.

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