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Between the time I finished having my children (1988) and when I was diagnosed with breast cancer (2007), I rarely went to the doctor. I was fairly healthy, and aside from an allergy pill now and then, I did not take any medicines, and I did not see the need to do wellness checkups or regular screenings. I have always had excellent health insurance, but Blue Cross probably didn’t recognize my name back then. Ah the ignorance of youth!

Once you get a diagnosis of cancer, you have more doctor visits than you can imagine and you are on the frequent flyer plan for insurance. Luckily for me, that all slowed down once I became cancer free, which I have been for 12 ½ years.

Now I have a yearly physical or what they call a wellness checkup, do regular screenings and take a slew of pills—some prescriptions, but mostly vitamins and supplements like CoQ10, glucosamine and fish oil.

Are they making a difference? I assume so, since I feel good but maybe it is a placebo effect. Regardless, I will keep taking them.

Today was my annual wellness check, and I got a flu shot—something else I now do every year.

FILE - In this Feb. 7, 2018 file photo, a nurse prepares a flu shot at the Salvation Army in Atlanta. The nation's nasty flu season has been fading for two weeks now, and health officials now feel confident the worst is over. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said the season apparently peaked in early February, when 1 of every 13 visits to the doctor were for fever, cough and other symptoms of the flu. That intensity level was among the highest seen in a decade. But CDC officials on Friday, March 2, said it's been falling since then, and last week dropped to 1 in 20. (AP Photo/David Goldman, File)
FILE - In this Feb. 7, 2018 file photo, a nurse prepares a flu shot at the Salvation Army in Atlanta. The nation's nasty flu season has been fading for two weeks now, and health officials now feel confident the worst is over. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said the season apparently peaked in early February, when 1 of every 13 visits to the doctor were for fever, cough and other symptoms of the flu. That intensity level was among the highest seen in a decade. But CDC officials on Friday, March 2, said it's been falling since then, and last week dropped to 1 in 20. (AP Photo/David Goldman, File)

I have never actually had the flu, and I sure don’t want it.

I was in and out fairly quickly today, which is also nice. Next week is bone density test, and I am told I need the new shingles vaccine (but they were out of it today).

I have friends that insist that they don't need to go to the doctor, that it will just make them sicker. I guess you need to look at all this medical stuff like taking care of your car.

NWA Democrat-Gazette/J.T. WAMPLER Classic cars are on display Sunday March 10, 2019 at Kelsey’s Hobby Shop Auto Repair in Fayetteville. Friends of Dave Kelsey organized the benefit classic car show to raise money for medical expenses for Kelsey.
NWA Democrat-Gazette/J.T. WAMPLER Classic cars are on display Sunday March 10, 2019 at Kelsey’s Hobby Shop Auto Repair in Fayetteville. Friends of Dave Kelsey organized the benefit classic car show to raise money for medical expenses for Kelsey.

You need oil changes every so many miles, and you need to have your tires rotated, and a new filter now and then. So, consider your blood work as an oil change, and your blood pressure like testing the air in your tires.

You want your car to last a long time, and the same is true of your body. So, go get a tune-up!

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