Jen Caudle

How often should you see the doctor?

I believe all adults should see the doctor at least once a year for a preventive check-up- aka, a “yearly physical” exam. This is a time where your doctor can discuss the following with you:

  • Preventive screenings
  • Immunizations
  • Ordering lab work
  • Reviewing your family history for any changes, as well as discussing your personal medical history, meds, etc.
  • Discussing your general well-being

In addition to the yearly physical, if you have chronic medical conditions (high blood pressure, diabetes, high cholesterol, asthma, etc.) you will likely need to see the doctor a few times a year or more. The frequency will be determined by your doctor and how controlled your medical conditions are.

What information should you have with you when you go to the doctor?

There are a few pieces of information you should have at the tips of your fingers when you go to the doctor. They are the following:

  • Your medication names and doses (not just the color/shape of the pill)
  • Any supplements or vitamins you are taking
  • Medical conditions your family members have had
  • Your past surgeries
  • Any allergies you have to medications and what the reaction is
  • Any change in the medical conditions you have
  • Bring copies of any medical records that your doctor might need

 How should you find a doctor?

There are many approaches to finding a physician. Many of us look to our health insurance to find doctors who are in our network, and this is fine. But regardless of how you search for a doctor, make sure to get references or recommendations from others. Consider calling the doctor’s office to ask questions that are important to you, and consider taking your new doctor for a “test drive.”

How to Know When to Move On

It is very important to have a good relationship with your doctor- the lines of communication should be open! It is important not to underestimate the importance of the doctor-patient relationship. If you haven’t found the right doctor, don’t hesitate to move on. You deserve a doctor who is right for you!

Dr. Jen is a Board-Certified Family Physician and Associate Professor at Rowan University. She frequently appears as a health expert on The Dr. Oz Show, CBS 3 Philadelphia News, Fox News, CNN, HLN and others.

Website: www.jennifercaudle.com

Twitter: @drjencaudle

Facebook: www.facebook.com/drjennifercaudle

Instagram: @drjencaudle

Snapchat: @drjencaudle

Email: info@jennifercaudle.com

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