Do You Really Need a Physical Every Year?

You’ve probably heard the saying “an apple a day keeps the doctor away.” It’s true that eating well and taking care of yourself can lead to fewer health conditions, and so can a yearly physical. 

A yearly physical is recommended for babies, children, and adults. It’s important to get a annual physical to ensure your health is in good standing, and get treatment if needed. Sometimes you may not see the warning signs of more serious conditions until you’ve had an opportunity to chat with your doctor. 

At Physicians Medical Urgent Care, Dr. Ines Munoz De Laborde and Dr. Sveltlana Burkhead conduct yearly physical exams in order to fully understand your health needs.

Types of physicals

If you have a school-age child, they may be required to undergo a yearly physical. During a school physical, our team will review your vaccine records and conduct a physical exam. 

Your child may also need a sports physical. A sports physical is common in children to evaluate the physical and athletic health of your child. Your doctor may conduct a series of physical tests to determine range of motion and overall health.

Pre-employment physicals are also common, especially if you work at a job that requires physical labor. Your employer may ask you to get a physical to conduct a hearing and vision exam, as well as check for drug use.

What to expect

During your yearly physical, you should expect your healthcare provider to ask you a series of questions about your medical history. Be prepared to answer questions about any changes in your medical history, current medications, or any concerns you have about your health. 

From a physical standpoint, your doctor will collect a variety of information such as: 

All of these factors can give your doctor a picture of your overall health.

Vaccines

Vaccines are one of the most common reasons people visit the doctor every year. Your doctor can review your vaccination record to ensure you are up-to-date on any necessary vaccinations. 

You can expect to get the following vaccinations as you age into adulthood: 

In addition, many schools require current vaccination records in order to attend school and participate in sporting activities. 

Why physicals matter

A yearly physical can tell a doctor a lot about your health. From a functional standpoint, your doctor can review your blood pressure readings (less than 120 over less than 80 is a normal blood pressure). If your blood pressure range is above normal, your doctor may consider hypertension as the cause. 

Your heart rate may also indicate overall health. A healthy heart rate is between 60 and 100. Anything above or below could be cause for concern. Your respiration rate should be between 12 and 16 breaths per minute. Breathing in an excess of 20 times per minute may suggest heart or lung conditions. 

While not required, your doctor may also do a few laboratory tests such as a complete blood count, chemistry panel, or a urinalysis (UA). These tests can indicate internal health problems or raise concerns if the numbers do not fall within normal range.

On the surface, it’s important to attend your yearly physical to ensure your vital signs look normal. You can use your exam to discuss any other concerns you may have about your physical and mental health. 

Schedule your yearly physical with Physicians Medical Urgent Care. Book online and visit the doctors at Physicians Medical Urgent Care for convenient and holistic care. 

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