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Preventative healthcare saves lives and money.  It is estimated that thousands of lives and millions of dollars can be saved annually if more Americans take preventative measures with their healthcare.  Preventative tests promote early detection of many medical conditions as well as thwart conditions from arising in the first place.  They allow doctors to check for any signs of a threatening condition.  By finding a condition before it is able to develop, you are able to medicate (and hopefully cure) the condition before while it is still tolerable.  These tests will require less advanced technology and therefore will be less expensive.  Depending on your age and gender, it is recommended that you get certain tests and vaccines more often than others.

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Vaccinations are just one of the preventative services we all need

9 preventative measures to maintaining your health:

  1. Routine Vaccinations: it is important to get routine vaccinations, like the flu, tetanus, and Hepatitis shots.  Protecting yourself from illnesses will keep your immune system healthy and ready to fight off other diseases.
  2. Blood Pressure Screenings: these screenings will monitor your blood pressure and advise you on how to maintain a healthy blood pressure level.  Regular screenings will monitor your level to avoid the risk of a cardiac event.
  3. Cholesterol tests: your awareness of this level will also help you know if your level risks a cardiac event.  If your cholesterol level is too high, your doctor can give you tips for lowering it.
  4. Blood tests: these tests can determine if you have certain conditions that you are unaware of.  Such conditions include diabetes, anemia, and thyroid disorders.
  5. Annual check-ups: these will check to make sure you’re maintaining a healthy weight (unhealthy weigh puts you at risk for many medical conditions) and they will check that you are up to date on all your medications.  Check-ups are also another opportunity to get your blood pressure and other tests updated.
  6. Bone mass tests: these tests examine you bone density to determine if you are at risk for osteoporosis.
  7. Mammograms (for women): women should get an annual mammogram to detect breast cancer.
  8. Cervical Cancer Shots (for women): these shots will help protect women against developing cervical cancer.
  9. Prostate Cancer check-ups (for men): There is a 1 in 6 chance that men will develop prostate cancer.   Men should get regular examinations to catch any signs of the development of prostate cancer.

Now, new Healthcare regulations require that many preventative tests are covered by your insurance carrier!  These new regulations will be applied to insurance plans no later than September 23, 2010.  So there is no reason why you should avoid doctor’s office, even when you are healthy.  Also, it is important to stay up-to-date on all of your medical tests.  This task of managing all of your medical needs may seem daunting at first, but making it more of a routine will help you stay on track.  Importantly, routine visits to the doctor’s office will develop your relationship with your doctor.  Your relationship is so central to your health because it allows your doctor to become familiar with you and your conditions.  This way, he or she will be able to notice changes in your behavior and medical tests that may be indicative of an arising medical condition.

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