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.

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.

HealthStatus Team

HealthStatus has been operating since 1998 providing the best interactive health tools on the Internet, millions of visitors have used our blood alcohol, body fat and calories burned calculators.

The HealthStatus editorial team has continued that commitment to excellence by providing our visitors with easy to understand high quality health content for many years.

Our team of health professionals, and researchers use peer reviewed studies as source elements in our articles.

Our high quality content has been featured in a number of leading websites, USA Today, the Chicago Tribune, Live Strong, GQ, and many more.
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HealthStatus has been operating since 1998 providing the best interactive health tools on the Internet, millions of visitors have used our blood alcohol, body fat and calories burned calculators. The HealthStatus editorial team has continued that commitment to excellence by providing our visitors with easy to understand high quality health content for many years. Our team of health professionals, and researchers use peer reviewed studies as source elements in our articles. Our high quality content has been featured in a number of leading websites, USA Today, the Chicago Tribune, Live Strong, GQ, and many more.

Amy Winters
15. July 2019
Amy Winters
15. July 2019
Thank you for pointing out that the national average for a doctor visit should be four times per year. I've been thinking about getting a medical exam done since I have moved to a new area. It's good to know that I should be seeing a doctor in my area at least four times a year.

Dave Anderson
29. April 2019
Dave Anderson
29. April 2019
That is interesting that people who smoke or drink should visit a doctor more frequently. Then they would be able to figure out how to maintain a more healthy lifestyle. That is something I would want to have for my dad, so maybe I should suggest to him visiting a doctor soon.

Amy Winters
21. January 2019
Amy Winters
21. January 2019
Thanks for pointing out that it's smart to have a checkup at least once a year, even if you don't notice any health problems. Lately I've been wanting to do better at preventative healthcare, so I've been doing some research online about recommended frequency for medical visits. I wasn't sure how often to visit a doctor for a checkup, so thanks for sharing that info here!

Sam Li
2. October 2018
Sam Li
2. October 2018
I appreciate the statistic you mentioned about the national average for doctor visits is around four times a year. I think that having regular, routine preventative exams is a good method to maintain bodily health and be prepared for the future. My wife and I are looking into getting a routine going with our doctor and we really think these exams will benefit us in the long run.

That one guy on the net
2. March 2018
That one guy on the net
2. March 2018
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.

Bernice
2. October 2017
Bernice
2. October 2017
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.

Meena devi
19. September 2017
Meena devi
19. September 2017
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.

amy
3. August 2017
amy
3. August 2017
heyy 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

R Sterner
10. July 2017
R Sterner
10. July 2017
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 !

Brian Gates
24. December 2016
Brian Gates
24. December 2016
There is no evidence that check-ups have any benefit. Nor is there any that cholesterol-lowering drugs prevents strokes as the article implies.

Eliza
28. October 2016
Eliza
28. October 2016
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?

Mary
29. August 2016
Mary
29. August 2016
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"

lee khan
18. August 2016
lee khan
18. August 2016
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.

fred
27. May 2016
fred
27. May 2016
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

James Bergman
27. January 2016
James Bergman
27. January 2016
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.

Fabiana
22. July 2015
Fabiana
22. July 2015
I`m trying to visit doctor two times per year.

martin jones
19. April 2015
martin jones
19. April 2015
Hi .how often should see a doctors for after care and tests.i had a stroke 5 months ago.

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