Brace yourself: Why preventative healthcare is important

We can do many things to try and stay healthy. We can get plenty of exercise, eat vitamin-rich fruits and vegetables, maintain an active social life, and avoid smoking and drug and alcohol abuse. Getting preventative health screenings to prevent illness or detect it early is also vital. Preventive screenings can help you find potential health problems early and receive treatment. They also can prevent you from getting certain illnesses. Receiving regular preventative services could reduce your risk of disability or even death.

Most health insurance plans provide preventative services. Your doctor can advise you on when to start getting preventive screenings and how often they should be performed. Sometimes, your risk factors for certain diseases may mean you have a greater chance of developing a specific disease. In this case, your doctor may recommend you be screened more frequently.

Below is a list of some preventative screenings you may want to discuss with your healthcare provider. This list is not all-inclusive. Check with your insurance provider to see if and how often the screening is covered.

Bone Mass Measurements: A test to see if you are at risk for broken bones due to osteoporosis. The lower your bone density, the higher the risk of fracture.

Breast Cancer Screening: Mammograms check for breast cancer that you or your doctor may not be able to find by a manual examination.

Colorectal Cancer Screening: Helps to find pre-cancerous polyps before they become cancerous. Several types of screenings are available.

Diabetes Screening: These screenings determine whether or not you are at risk for developing or might have diabetes.

Prostate Cancer Screening: Measures the amount of Prostate Specific Antigen (PSA) in the blood.

Cholesterol Screening: a blood test that checks the amount of cholesterol and triglycerides in your blood. High cholesterol can lead to heart disease.

It is essential to see your healthcare provider regularly, even if you are feeling well. Preventative screenings are a vital tool to help you maintain your good health.

Upcoming Events:

A Medicare Options Class-Brown Bag Lunch and Learn will be held from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 13, at the Oskaloosa Office, 100 E Washington, 785-863-2212. This class is free. Please call to register

A Medicare Open Enrollment Plan Review will be held Oct. 15 through Dec. 7. Appointments are available in all three district offices:

Holton Office, 114 W Fifth St., 785-364-4125

Oskaloosa Office, 100 E Washington, 785-863-2212

Seneca Office, 1500 Community Dr., 785-336-2184

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