Manish Menda 22 Nov 2022

Typically, you contact your doctor whenever you're ill or notice a problem. Therefore, visiting them when you're feeling fine may seem counterintuitive. So, do you really need an annual health examination? It's one question that has been on many people's minds.
While maintaining your health through a balanced diet, exercise, and a healthy lifestyle is essential; it is also crucial to have regular checkups.

The CDC, or Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, advises getting regular general health exams. The best way to spot potential physical issues early, before they develop into a more serious condition, is to have a general health checkup. It can also help you avoid time, money, and health issues from progressing.

Making the appointment and taking the time to visit a doctor for an annual physical check-up may be inconvenient. Doctor's appointments are frequently not at the top of the to-do list for many 20 and 30-year-olds. In fact, according to a 2018 survey, 33% of millennials don't even have a primary care physician.

Although it's easy to feel unstoppable when you're young and have no health problems, routine checkups can safeguard your long-term health. In addition, early detection gives your healthcare provider the knowledge they need to treat your condition and offer medical services that can stop the progression of the disease.

To achieve the best results from treatment at the earliest stages, cardiovascular disease, and cancer, in particular, require the earliest detection timeframes. In addition, your chances of living a long, healthy life are increased by taking an active role in your health and receiving the treatments and screenings you require.

In your 20s, 30s, and beyond, keep up with your annual physical checkups for the following reasons.

Five Reasons Why You Need An Annual Examination

Everyone, regardless of age, is strongly advised to undergo a yearly physical examination. Your primary care doctor will typically conduct physical exams. It can help determine your current state of health, which can pave the way for early intervention and prevention of any health problems that you are currently at risk for.

Additionally, it can facilitate open communication between you and your doctor and provide an opportunity for you to discuss your symptoms and general health. Additionally, these examinations are used to check for potential illnesses and update immunizations so they can be identified and treated before any symptoms even show up.

Here are five reasons why an annual checkup is essential:

1. Prevent Health Issues

This should be the prime motivator for annual checkups. During yearly checkups, your doctor can assess any changes that have occurred over the previous year and promote healthy habits.

Additionally, your doctor can assist you in identifying risk factors and provide guidance on how to manage them to prevent potential health issues in the future. Finally, your doctor can help you achieve your goal of staying as healthy as possible.

Your doctor will examine your vital signs, blood pressure, cholesterol, and blood sugar levels during your annual physical checkup to look for any unhealthy trends or abnormalities that could be signs of heart disease, diabetes, or other illnesses. Regular testing, lifestyle modifications, or medication can frequently slow or even reverse harmful changes.

  • Your doctor might request any of the following extra tests if anomalies are found:
  • Cholesterol test to assess your risk of heart disease or stroke and how well your heart is doing.
  • Other blood tests to determine how well your internal organs are working.
  • Urine tests to look for potential bladder, kidney, or urinary tract issues.
  • Blood sugar test to manage your risk of developing diabetes and pre-diabetes.

2. Review Vaccine Records And Medications

An annual physical exam is an excellent time for your doctor to review your medication and immunization histories. In addition, your doctor will examine each medication you are taking to determine whether there is a problem with it or whether the dosages were given correctly.

Immunizations are frequently prioritized for children, but depending on their immunization records, health factors and age, there are several vaccines that can be beneficial for adults. Examining your immunization history at your annual physical examination is an excellent way to determine whether you would benefit from receiving any additional vaccinations.

3. Bolster Your Relationship With Your Doctor

The yearly physical exam is an opportunity for both the patient, and the doctor to build a bond based on credibility. People are more likely to visit their doctors, be honest with them, and pay attention to their advice if they trust the doctor and get along well with them.

The ideal time to ask your doctor any questions you may have is during your physical examination. It's an opportunity for you to discuss any issues that are bothering you, whether it's a persistent health problem or something you read and want your doctor's opinion on.

4. Save Money

Regular doctor visits ensure your health and may result in financial savings. The consultations assist your doctor in identifying diseases early on when they are most easily treatable. In addition, your doctor can identify potential health issues during these visits and advise you on how to avoid them.

5. Cancer Screening

Cancer treatment is most effective when it is discovered early, even though there are many unanswered questions regarding it. Emphasis is being given on screening for Cancer early, before any symptoms emerge, using screening tests. Unfortunately, many cancer screening tests must be performed by a doctor and cannot be done at home.

Depending on your age and gender, your doctor may perform a number of cancer screening tests during your annual checkup. For example, your doctor will perform a routine pelvic exam, pap test, and mammogram if you're a female to screen for cervical, ovarian, and breast cancer.

Your doctor will start screening you for colorectal cancer once you turn 50. You will be examined for colon and prostate cancer if you are a male. You may also be screened for lung cancer if you are a smoker and have a family history of lung cancer

How To Prepare For An Annual Examination?

You can make the most of your appointment by taking a few quick steps to prepare for your physical examination, such as: 

  • Make sure you bring blood work reports, pap smears, mammograms, and other screening tests with you so your doctor can review them.
  • Write down questions ahead of time so that all your concerns are raised.
  • Schedule appointments ahead of time.
  • Let your doctor know if you have received any new diagnoses, undergone surgery, received a vaccination, or have any other recent health information to share.
  • Bring any health-related data you keep track of, such as a food journal, blood pressure chart, symptom diary, or anything else, to your doctor's appointment.

What To Expect During An Annual Examination?

Depending on the patient and the doctor, every appointment is different. Everybody receives a basic examination, but doctors adjust certain aspects according to each patient. Here are a few things to expect during an annual examination:

  • Doctors will review each organ by asking questions.
  • A head-to-toe examination will be conducted. During this, the doctor will examine each organ, and skin, check your mouth and ears and feel your lymph nodes.
  • Doctors may also ask questions and listen to any concerns or issues You may have.
  • Healthcare providers also keep track of family history and substance use and abuse.
  • Lastly, to get an idea about your mental health status and gauge your current stage of life, the doctor may inquire about general life updates.

Final Thoughts

Many health problems can go unchecked for years or until they become serious issues without regular physical exams. Annual physical checkups enable preventive care by enabling you to take charge of your health before problems arise.

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About the Author:

Manish Menda is one of the Co-Founders of Mya Care. He has a Bachelor of Business Administration from Washington University in St. Louis and a Master of Business Administration from Saïd Business School, University of Oxford. Manish is an avid entrepreneur and pioneered patient financing in India. Manish and his family founded Mya Care with the intention to empower patients and give them the tools they need to find health and wellness services for their specific needs around the world. Manish leads an active lifestyle, and his hobbies include cycling, hiking, padel tennis, swimming, weight training and yoga.


  • Glauser, Wendy. "Primary care system outdated and inconvenient for many millennials." CMAJ : Canadian Medical Association journal = journal de l'Association medicale canadienne vol. 190,48 (2018): E1430-E1431. doi:10.1503/cmaj.109-5688

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