What’s Going Around: Preventative health care

The end of the year is a great time to take stock of what physicals, screenings and tests you need to get done to keep on top of your health.
Published: Nov. 30, 2022 at 9:02 AM CST
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SPRINGFIELD, Mo. (KY3) - Between Christmas shopping, holiday parties and family gatherings, there is a lot to keep us busy this time of year but instead of focusing solely on others, it might be a good time to focus on yourself.

“So when I’m looking at preventative health care, our priority is a routine physical that should be done yearly,” said Cindy Griessel, a physician assistant at Mercy. “That usually includes some bloodwork, we’re screening for diabetes, screening for high cholesterol and I tell my patients, it’s better to come in, even if you’re healthy or consider yourself healthy, to get that routine exam done once a year. "

Griessel said the end of the year is a good time to take an inventory of your health and what you have available through your insurance.

“Interesting enough, a lot of employers, through their insurance or just through their health department, will actually incentivize patients to get a routine physical,” said Griessel. “I’ve had patients coming to me and tell me they get a gift card for $100 or they get a discount on their insurance.”

Griessel said it’s also a good time to get your recommended screenings.

“Women over the age of 40 should be getting their screening mammograms done and they’ve recently lowered the age for a colonoscopy to screen for colon cancer to 45, that should be done once every 10 years as long as it’s normal,” said Griessel.

As we all know, there is no shortage of good food this time of year but Griessel said there are ways to stay on track with your healthy choices.

“First of all, don’t enter a weight loss plan during the holidays, failure is likely going to be on the docket,” said Griessel. “So I say to my patients, let’s all work on maintaining our weight through the holidays. Also, make sure you get enough sleep, drink enough water, and stay active during the holiday season.”

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