4 Reasons Why Regular Health Check-ups are Important
One common mistake that most people these days make is failing to take proper care of their health. We spend so much time on activities like eating, traveling and shopping; yet, few of us pay visits to hospitals for regular health check-ups. Despite being aware of the consequences, many still have reservations when it comes to medical exams.
According to most medical organizations and doctors, there are plenty of reasons why regular health check-ups are important. Not only does the habit help you detect diseases and treat them on time, but it also contributes to a healthy lifestyle.
Why do we need health checks?
As life quality is improved, the risk of illnesses is also increased. Nowadays, health conditions such as cancer, diabetes, and heart disease have been running rampant. Unfortunately, most of us still retain the mindset of the old days – we only pay visits to hospitals and medical institutes when we feel pain. At that time, the game is usually over.
When it comes to medical examination, men are generally less inclined to visit the hospital than women. The reason lies in the everlasting masculinity concept – men must appear to be “strong” in front of other people. That’s why most of them tend to ignore mild symptoms like cold, fever, and cough. According to Mary Himmelstein of Rutgers University, New Jersey, this perception of “toughness” is the cause of men’s poorer health and shorter lifespan compared to women’s.
A lack of frequent health checks results in long-term health consequences. Most chronic, dangerous diseases (e.g: cancer, diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease) do not exhibit any early symptoms until they reach the later stages. When that happens, treatment is either very expensive or completely impossible.
Reasons why regular health check-ups are important
No matter if you feel healthy or not, routine health checks are still recommended because of the numerous benefits that they promise.
1. A chance to assess the risk of illnesses
A visit to the hospital allows the doctor to evaluate your overall health condition, medical history, and living habits. From that, he/she will find out any risk factors that may contribute to serious illnesses, and recommend a treatment plan/ change of lifestyle accordingly.
For some people, the risk of certain illnesses is higher, which makes it even more important to go to the doctor frequently.
- Smokers and men over 40 years old are at higher risk of lung cancer – hence, they need to get a chest X-ray every 6 months.
- Overweight people who have passed the age of 40 should have frequent blood tests to detect diabetes.
- For women who have been pregnant many times and a history of genital infection, a colposcopy may help them screen for cervical cancer.
2. Higher rate of success
Generally, early detection of diseases means a much higher chance of successful treatment. This is especially true in case of conditions such as cancer. Take lung cancer as an example – if the condition progresses to stage III, the survival rate after 5 years is only 2-4%. Meanwhile, if treatment commences at stage I, that rate may be increased up to 30%.
Aside from an increased success rate, medical exams also play a role in preventing further complications. For diabetes, early diagnosis helps reduce the risk of kidney disease, heart failure, neuropathy, and foot infection.
3. Saving money and time
Regular health checks provide an opportunity to screen for diseases, deal with risk factors, and limit the seriousness of potential complications. With early detection and proper treatment, patients who suffer from conditions such as diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease, etc. can return to life quickly. Not to mention, early treatment reduces the need for medications, which means both cost savings and less long-term damage to the patients’ health.
4. Longer and happier life
Based on the health examination results, the doctor will give advice about what you need to do to treat/ prevent diseases. These include changes in diet, exercise, working environment, hygiene, etc. By making these changes, patients will be able to stay healthy and prolong their life.
For years, Japan has been known to have the highest life expectancy in the world. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), the average life expectancy of Japanese in 2018 is 84.2 years old. One of the reasons for this is that most Japanese maintain the habit of having health check-ups twice per year.
As stated before, regular health checks allow for saving money and time, so you have more time to spend with your family members and relatives. Hence, the overall quality of your life will become significantly better.
1. How often should I have a health check-up?
In the ideal scenario, you need to have a health check-up every 6 months to 1 year. This is especially true for those over 40 – after this age, most people will start exhibiting signs of health deterioration. For younger people, a lower frequency of health checks is tolerable. According to the American Medical Association (AMA), adults below 40 should have a medical exam for at least every 5 years.
2. How is a health check-up carried out?
Different health check-up packages will consist of different procedures and medical tests. Typically, a medical examination should include the following:
- Height / weight measurement;
- Blood test;
- Blood sugar check;
- Ear – Nose – Throat examination;
- Eye check-up;
- Obesity test;
- Bone density test.
For people of different genders/ ages/ health conditions, certain additional tests may be recommended for them. These include breast & cervical cancer screening for women, prostate & liver check for men, chest Radiography for smokers, electrocardiogram for heart disease diagnosis, etc.
3. How much does a health check-up cost?
It depends on your healthcare provider and the procedures involved in the examination. In general, every hospital offers health packages that cover a wide range of prices – most of which are determined based on the general community’s needs and spending capability.
After all, a healthy body is critical to maintaining your work performance and living a happy life. Depending on your budget, needs, and conditions, choose a healthcare package that suits you most.
4. Where can I have a health check?
At GO.CARE, we work with more than 250 hospitals & clinics, which are located across various Asian countries (Singapore, Thailand, Malaysia, India, Vietnam, Indonesia, etc.). Our partners are chosen based on a number of strict criteria, including international certification, long-term reputation, experience in treating both local and international patients. Many of our hospitals offer high-quality, patient-based healthcare services at very affordable prices. Some of the most notable examples include Raffles Hospital (Singapore), Vejthani Hospital, Samitivej Hospital (Thailand), FV Hospital (Vietnam).
For more information about our health check-up services and pricing policy, click here.
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GO.CARE does not provide medical advice, diagnosis, and treatment services.
Checkup. https://www.betterhealth.vic.gov.au/health/servicesandsupport/regular-health-checks. Accessed on September 17, 2019.
General Medical Checkup. https://www.emedicinehealth.com/checkup/article_em.htm#facts_about_and_definition_of_medical_checkups. Accessed on September 17, 2019.
Wellness checkup. https://thefono.org/services-fees/general-medical-services/general-check-up-medical-exam-medical-consultation-adults/. Accessed on September 17, 2019.