It’s a brand-new year and with that comes the opportunity to take stock and make resolutions and goals. The most common resolutions are usually health and fitness-related and are addressed with a gym membership that never gets used! So, what’s the alternative and where should you start?
Today, we’re going to be looking at why the best gift you can give yourself at the start of a new year is a private health screening. Clinics such as the Harley Street Health Centre offer a variety of screening packages, such as their Wellman and Wellwoman screenings that present an abundance of health benefits for anyone interested.
Having a regular check-up is a key differentiator in the quality of health in later life. According to Harvard Health, a regular check-up with your doctor helps to reduce the incidence of serious illness, fosters a better relationship between patients and doctors and improves lifestyles.
These preventative health check-ups are designed to put you at ease, spot early symptoms of disease and help plan your lifestyle habits for the year. You can see why they go hand in hand with new year’s resolutions. Plus, the benefits don’t just stop there! Read on to find out why private health screenings should be the go-to new year’s gift for yourself.
1. Identify health risks early
Acute and chronic conditions can be treated more efficiently if they’re diagnosed at an early stage. In the past, people would only visit their health practice as a last resort; they would only see their doctor when they were very unwell or had significant ongoing symptoms. Now, preventative healthcare is the way forward as people look to become more health-conscious and educated about their own health.
Regular health checks include full physical examinations as well as extensive blood testing and other diagnostic tools, such as resting electrocardiograms to examine the health of your heart and cervical smear testing. Add-on testing such as ultrasounds can also be included. These examinations truly are full body check-ups.
The comprehensiveness of these health checks means you can catch diseases and conditions at a very early stage. Then, your doctor can prescribe the right treatment for you before the symptoms get a chance to develop and become troublesome and more difficult to reverse. For example, did you know that catching type 2 diabetes early means you can entirely reverse the condition, and keeping your cholesterol within normal limits reduces your risk of stroke and heart disease enormously? Health screenings empower you to make changes to your lifestyle in time to reverse your risk of serious illnesses and give your doctor a chance to help while your condition is easily treatable.
According to cancer.org, early detection is crucial to cancer survival rate, with the survival rate of stage one cancer hitting 100 percent, while stage 2 cancer falls to 93 percent when detected early. Many cancers don’t show significant symptoms until they’re quite advanced, which is why preventative healthcare is so important – things will show up on your blood results and ultrasound tests before you feel and experience them.
Health screenings give you the chance to be active in your health choices, rather than reactive.
2. Inform your new year’s resolutions
An understated but huge plus with health screenings such as these is that they give you 90 minutes with a clinician to talk through your medical history, your health concerns, your family history and lifestyle. It’s rare to have a GP’s time outside of a scheduled appointment, but having access to medical expertise for an extended period of time, as well as a follow-up call with your results and a written report can make all the difference to getting things on track. Small changes such as diet, exercise, smoking, stress management can all be discussed too. These small changes can have vital long-term consequences and discussing them – even if it’s just once a year – gives you a foundation and plan to work from.
For female patients, it’s also a chance to use a longer appointment time to get advice on family planning or birth control. During these examinations, your doctor and yourself can come up with a timeline, give you advice on how to prepare for pregnancy or even recommend you to a fertility specialist. These appointments are far more focused and tailored to the individual than short single-time GP appointments to deal with a solitary issue.
You can promise yourself that this year will be different and resolve to meet new fitness goals, but if it’s not informed by science and understanding of diet and nutrition, it’s yet another aimless promise with no finishing line in sight. Tie these fundamentals together with necessary health check-ups at periodic intervals. You’re far more likely to succeed in fulfilling your new year’s resolution if you have someone in your corner, supporting you with professional support!
3. A chance for further health education
Wellman and Wellwoman Screenings offered by The Harley Street Health Centre aren’t just about doing a general check-up and forgetting about it until you get called in for another one. The generous consultations provide the perfect setting and privacy standards for individual and personalised health education. Patients get invaluable face-to-face intimate time with their GP and can fully discuss any issues they have without fear of running out of time or straying away from what’s allowed – remember this is a head to toe screening!
As a result, patients are better-advised and educated about various health conditions, symptoms and preventative practices for health conditions and hereditary issues tied directly to themselves. It’s a form of efficient targeted preventative healthcare – all things we like!
If you get into the habit of regular health checks, you’ll be more aware of your body and what you can do to lead a healthier lifestyle. Screenings also give you the chance to keep your physician and doctor apprised of your health, sharing your results and findings with them is recommended.
Further health education also gives you the opportunity to discuss your family history with a trained medical professional. You can examine whether you are at risk of any hereditary conditions and what measures you can take to stay well.
4. Includes extensive blood tests
We can easily spot the symptoms of the common cold or a fever, but many serious conditions don’t show symptoms until they’re quite advanced, and some never do until they cause a serious issue. For example, how can we know we have high cholesterol? Many people live with undiagnosed conditions that hinder their wellbeing such as vitamin D deficiency, iron deficiency, anaemia, thyroid dysfunction and so much more.
Regular health screenings also include blood tests. Often packages will detail how extensive the blood test will be with clinics offering tests for the full profile, with options to add on all kinds of tests from hormonal testing to STIs.
A blood test during a check-up will do one of two things: if it comes back clear it can reassure patients that they have no hard-to-spot symptoms and no underlying conditions to fret over. If it comes back with abnormalities, you get the chance to spot and screen various potential diseases before they get the chance to grow and develop.
These check-ups are all about looking after yourself and making sure you’re as informed about your body and as healthy as you can possibly be.
5. Boost your immunity
If you get into the habit of doing health screenings yearly or bi-yearly, you’ll become the preventive champion. Naturally, you’ll see your diet, nutrition and lifestyle fall in line with that of a healthy person. At a time when a strong immunity is very important, nothing is more valuable than living a lifestyle that supports your health and wellbeing.
There is overwhelming evidence that links a strong immunity, good gut health and a healthy lifestyle to good mental health too.
6. Personalised health screening
With health, there is no one size fits all. So many providers take your height and weight and declare you overweight, but did they check your fat content, waist measurement, waist to hip ratio or waist to height ratio? Did they consider your build and musculature? Clinics like the Harley Street Health Centre believe in personalised health screening, where doctors see you as a whole person. Some clinics will let you design your own health screening consultation down to the type of blood tests you may want to do and the focus of the screening.
You don’t get this level of control and individuality with other health services and packages. It’s truly an opportunity for you to treat yourself and the temple that houses you!
7. Perfect opportunity for female patients
These yearly check-ups are especially important for female patients. Some women choose to skip yearly appointments believing that without symptoms, there’s no need to see a gynaecologist – this is a massive misconception. With a Wellwoman examination, the patient gets different checks and advice relevant to her age. It also involves a smear test that looks for abnormalities and aids in cervical cancer prevention. According to Cancer Research UK, there are an average of 3,200 new cases of cervical cancer every year, or eight new cases every day. By conducting yearly check-ups, clinicians can spot and treat issues like this at an earlier, more malleable stage.
These check-ups also include a professional breast exam. While it’s paramount that individuals regularly check their breasts for lumps and abnormalities, it’s always reassuring to get a professional opinion – this is a guaranteed opportunity every year and provides the same benefit as smear tests in that it can spot an issue early and give you control. You can even add on a breast ultrasound or mammogram as a recommended screening.
The Harley Street Health Centre has the package for you!
Yearly health screenings and check-ups should be the standard for patients. It’s paramount that preventative healthcare takes a front row seat over emergency healthcare. A lot of conditions and diseases can be spotted before symptoms begin to show. With Harley Street Health Centre’s health screenings, you can allay all your anxiety after a thorough analysis of your body, diet and lifestyle.
The centre offers a wide variety of health check packages for male and female patients. Wellwoman and Wellman packages (available at bronze, silver, gold and platinum level) are designed to suit patients’ individual needs and all include a special full blood profile. They are even happy to help you create your own package individually priced for you!