We’ve spent an inordinate amount of time over the past two years trying to avoid a deadly virus. Pandemic avoidance has been a full-time job – and for some of us, a distraction from the routine… regular… even boring… job of preventative care.
Medical advances have changed our world for the better – but sometimes the things that really hurt us tend to be sneaky, silent. February is American Heart Health Month, and a good reminder that heart disease is still the #1 killer in the US annually, claiming more than 650,000 each year. More than covid, more than cancer.
I don’t know about you – but I am trying to minimize surprises in my life – especially bad ones. The more I know, the better. The more I prevent, the better.
First, a small confession.
I’m a little behind my preventative health maintenance schedule as well. And the more I ask friends, the more I see that “covid-time” has set most of us behind on the little things like annual or age-based cancer screenings, well-checks and even the dreaded weigh-ins.
One friend said it had been so long since she went to her gynecologist, she was too embarrassed to go back, and was just going to change doctors. That’s extreme – but shows how routine maintenance has fallen off the screen for some of us. Another found that the ages for suggesting cancer screens had changed since she had been to her primary care doctor, and she was way overdue to screen for some hereditary conditions.
I work in the healthcare and services field and have published papers on the topic of lack of preventative care and how it negatively affects care costs and overall health outcomes. The U.S. spends the most on care, but we are still one of the sickest first-world countries. I think we can change that. Our nurses at PyxisCare are helping to change that for our clients every day. Even when we begin with clients as a result of trauma (stroke, heart attack, injury, accident, etc.) our goal is to get them into a proactive stance on their healthcare, if possible.
Take Your Doctor a Valentine – They Miss You
So, if you read this header and got a little nervous – don’t be overwhelmed. Get out your calendar and systematically call each of your doctors and confirm the last time you saw them – and make a new appointment. You won’t be sorry. If you’re like me, your physician, PA or nurse practitioner may be missing you. And take them a Valentine, because they’re taking care of your heart. And all the other parts, too.