Why You Shouldn't Skip Your Annual Physical Exam

Why You Shouldn't Skip Your Annual Physical Exam

Making time for your annual physical when you feel healthy and lead a hectic life can seem needless. Making it a priority each year, however, can go a long way toward keeping you as healthy as possible in the near future and long term. No matter your age or health status, you can benefit from an annual checkup.

At Gulf West Medical Associates in Port Richey, Florida, experienced physician Dr. Rajesh B. Dave, aka “Dr. Dave,” conducts physical exams of all types. In this blog article, we explore several important reasons you don’t want to skip your annual one. 

They allow your doctor to establish health baselines

Your personal health baselines give your doctor a solid idea as to your generally healthy state. This is important for determining any relatively sudden or pronounced changes, while guarding against misdiagnosis. If your normal pulse is slightly higher than the average person’s, for example, that’s important for Dr. Dave to know. 

This baseline is shaped by medical, family history, and social factors and takes into account both any existing and possible future illnesses. In this way, yearly physicals can make way for preventive medicine.

Screenings your provider may recommend at your exam include:

You can discuss symptoms that seem like no big deal

It can be easy to chalk up issues like frequent headaches or sleep problems to stress, but what if a medical condition, such as anemia or sleep apnea, is to blame? You’ll never know if you attempt to grin and bear your symptoms, versus discussing them with a qualified expert. By examining your physical health and reviewing your medical history and symptoms, Dr. Dave can help determine whether particular tests, treatments, or lifestyle changes are in order.

They allow for detection of asymptomatic health problems

Many potentially serious medical problems cause few, if any, symptoms early on. And some conditions remain asymptomatic until a catastrophic event occurs. One common example is hypertension. Also known as high blood pressure, this “silent killer” may present no symptoms at all until you have a heart attack. Receiving a diagnosis and treatment early on can lower your risk for serious complications.

Other potentially asymptomatic conditions your provider can detect at your annual physical include:


You could also learn that you’re pregnant at an annual physical, before any obvious signs set in. 

You can stay up-to-date with vaccinations

Many people have little idea as to the vaccinations with which they’re currently up-to-date as time goes on. By having an annual physical exam, you can be sure to stay current with vaccinations such as your annual flu shot and your Tdap vaccine, which protects against whooping cough, diphtheria, and tetanus, every 10 years. These simple and safe vaccines can help protect you and those around you from potentially serious illness for years to come.

Lastly, seeing Dr. Dave each year can help you establish and maintain a positive rapport so that you feel comfortable getting any support or treatment you need for years to come. 

To schedule your annual physical or get the care you need, call Gulf West Medical Associates, or request an appointment on our website.

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