How Often Should You See A Doctor?

How Often Should You See A Doctor?

When was the last time you saw a doctor? If you are like most people, it’s been too long. Even if you are “healthy” and have “nothing wrong” with you, it is wise even when young to have a yearly checkup. Bad-nasties have a way of sneaking up on you, and with some of these things a span of two or three years can be the difference between beating cancer, and, well, not.

Proper diet and exercise play a large role in our health, but genetics may “over rule” these efforts. If you have a family history of any of the multitudes of cancers, high blood pressure, sleep disorders, allergies, or any of a whole list of health issues, yearly physicals may detect them early, and early detection is vital for your health and safety.

The national average for visits to doctors is actually around four times per year. That doesn’t necessarily mean that everyone sees a doctor four times a year though. Babies are seen by doctors an average of 9 times a year, while kids from five to fifteen years of age average only just over 2 times yearly. Uninsured persons visit doctors less often by about half when compared to persons with private insurance.

Some people will only go see a doctor when they have an emergency and go to the emergency room, and studies have shown that the poor or uninsured often go for extended periods without needed care. This is unfortunate as in many cases early detection can save lives.

If someone has a stroke caused by a blockage, that could well have been prevented had they had a check up and were found to have high cholesterol and had been taking the proper medications.

High blood pressure is another killer that can be easily remedied with drugs such as ACE inhibitors that if left untreated can cause heart attack and stroke. Persons that smoke, drink, overeat, or don’t exercise are at higher risk than people that try to maintain a healthy lifestyle and so should visit the doctor more frequently. Of course stopping the bad habits and increasing the good will lessen the risk of health issues.

[pel_getmldata healthy=’yes’ numrec=3]

After infants, persons with health conditions have the greatest need to visit the doctor. Patients with high blood pressure may see a doctor four to six times a year to be checked and have medications refilled or adjusted. Patients with conditions such as chronic pain from injuries may visit their doctor six to twelve times a year. Pregnant women will need to see a doctor from every four or five weeks to weekly, depending on the term of pregnancy.

Patients with more serious conditions such as cancer patients may need to see a doctor every few weeks during chemotherapy. Patients undergoing dialysis treatments may need to see a doctor, a Nephrologist, several times a week for treatment.

The question how often one should see a doctor does not have a simple one-size-fits-all answer. The short answer is at least once a year for an annual checkup just to make sure nothing is going on with you that may need attention.


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  1. James Bergman Reply

    As someone who doesn’t get checkups as often as he should I know how difficult it is to make an appointment to see the doctor. It is one of those things that I put off because I don’t feel sick and feel like I don’t need it right now. However, I am trying to remedy that. As I get older I know there are more risks and have been told by countless friends that if I don’t see my doctor regularly he won’t be able to tell if my health is declining or not. So, I think it is time to change my ways. Thanks for your post.

    1. R Sterner

      Can’t imagine what it is like to have a hard time getting to the Dr. After age 66 my Dr has me on a white board of Do items. I call May, Hell Month. Each time I see her we end up with a month or so of false diagnosis and bring in the specialists. This well meaning Dr puts me through a human Dyno Test each year of some part of my body I would never suspect. What a nuisance. My wife says the Dr is just looking out for me. I spend less time tinkering with my street rod. Humm !

  2. fred Reply

    Physical 01-13-2016 next appointment 07-13-2016.i used to see her every 3 month now it’s maybe 2 or 3 time a year maybe. It’s not us its the provider that sets the visits and I think they don’t even know themselves. I go more to my pain doctor than my provider.i will expressly concern tou doctor when I see her. Texan plus classic. Dr angelas Lai-zayas

  3. lee khan Reply

    I agree, I always feel good physically, emotionally, and mentally and I attribute it to diet, exercise, and regular doctor visits to confirm my health, which, I’m proud to say is excellent.

  4. Mary Reply

    Funny you can’t get an appointment when there is something wrong. I can imagine the receptionists reaction at our surgery to “I need my yearly check up”

  5. Eliza Reply

    I am fifteen years old, and I’ve never had a check up before in my life. I’ve never had any life threatening illnesses and I think I am pretty healthy. Should I go to a check up or is it ok to just leave it?

  6. Brian Gates Reply

    There is no evidence that check-ups have any benefit. Nor is there any that cholesterol-lowering drugs prevents strokes as the article implies.

    1. That one guy on the net

      You need to have a check-up to see whether you are afflicted with something you were not aware of -something that could potentially progress into something worse. God forbidding- Cancer, for example; You need to be aware of it at an early stage before it becomes particularly tricky to deal with.

  7. amy Reply

    i wanted to inquire on how often should you visit for a check up incase you have had low white blood cells from your previous check ups however dont have cancer and had medications to boost up white blood cell count

  8. Meena devi Reply

    Having Radical mastectomy rt side two yrs back, now taking Letrozole 2.5 daily. 70 yrs old.female. high cholesterol. So how frequent I have to do general check up.blood test etc.

  9. Bernice Reply

    I totally agree with this. Having an annual health checkup and knowing your current health status is important for everyone especially those who want to maintain a healthy lifestyle.

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