Tag Archive for: united physician group

Why It’s Important to Listen to Doctor’s Orders

Though many people managed through the worst of the COVID pandemic without access to their usual hairstylist or personal trainer, we all gained a deeper appreciation for those we rely on for our happiness, fitness, beauty, and health. And the most important person watching over your long-term health is your primary care doctor. 

Though there may be some debate about the necessity of annual check-ups for healthy individuals, listening to your doctor’s advice is beneficial for more than one reason.

Establishing Health Baselines

Your doctor may advise you to stay on top of annual physicals, as these sessions allow you both to track (and potentially treat) a variety of conditions, including diabetes and high blood pressure. A yearly physical may even help your doctor detect cancer earlier, when it may be easier to treat.

“When we meet for annual physicals, it creates a health baseline and strengthens the patient-physician relationship, which is important to maximize your wellness,” says Michael Fedewa, Jr., DO, a board-certified family physician at Duke Primary Care Holly Springs Family Medicine. “If we know you when you’re well, we’re going to be ready to provide the best care when you’re sick, and we may be able to prevent some illness altogether.”

Early detection circumvents a variety of future problems. “It’s never enjoyable to learn that your body isn’t functioning the way it should,” OnHealth experts acknowledge, “but blood tests . . . can save you from much more serious health complications down the road. Discovering what ails you early can also save you money in the long run.”

Well-Researched Expertise

Convenient and convincing as the internet (or your neighbors and loved ones) may be, your doctor is truly the best source of trusted, up-to-date medical information. 

“[E]ven the most ‘reliable’ sources can be confusing,” Minneapolis-based neurologist Dr. Frederick Strobl, told HuffPost. “They don’t have the background a medical professional has to evaluate other’s claims so if they don’t want to follow my advice, they should really seek a second opinion from another doctor, not a friend or neighbor.” 

This expert knowledge is a product of the extensive educational requirements for doctors, which include:

  • Bachelor’s or equivalent undergraduate degree in an accredited institution
  • A four-year medical degree from a medical school
  • Passing of medical board exams
  • Residency with rotations in different medical specialties (e.g., emergency medicine and in-patient hospital care) for 3-4 years 
  • American Board of Family Medicine (ABFM) certification
  • A state license to practice in the area where they work, which in many states must be continually renewed

Your doctor’s cumulative expertise makes them the best source when it comes to your whole-body health. 

An Expert Who Truly Cares

Once you find the right family doctor, you’ll have a health advocate for the long-haul. “Primary care . . . is really the patient’s medical home,” says Dr. Danielle Martin, the Chief Medical Executive and Executive Vice President at Women’s College Hospital in Toronto (WCH) and a prominent advocate for public health care. “The value . . .  is that you accompany people through their journey in life through the high points and the low points and really try to be their anchor in the healthcare system.”

When you build a relationship with your doctor through regular visits, they become a caring person who knows your family history, is better equipped to connect you with their network of specialists, and can work with your individual needs to prevent, manage, and treat any chronic conditions. More than a check-the-box chore, they can be someone who fosters your health — hopefully through your long and healthy life. 

United Physicians Group doctors are eager to be these trusted resources for you and your family. Connect with us online or call (833) 523-0906. 

Can Wellness Tools and Treatments Help Chronic Pain?

Chronic pain can be difficult to handle, and it takes trial and error to find what mitigates your pain. United Physicians Group wants to help you find the right solution, without the noise the internet brings. We’ll help you better understand your treatment options. 

Therapies to Reduce Pain 

It’s important to properly take care of both your physical and mental health when treating chronic pain. Along with physical therapy, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) and other modes of counseling can help manage the mental side effects of dealing with chronic pain. 

Physical and mental therapies can also help you reduce the stress in your life. Heightened stress can be a culprit of worsened symptoms, so taking care of your mental health may lighten the load. At-home methods of reducing stress, like keeping a routine, staying connected with friends, and paying attention when you need to rest, may provide relief.

A few other therapies have been demonstrated to help with chronic pain as well, such as: 

Don’t limit yourself to just one therapy method. A study conducted by the Center for Substance Abuse Treatment has illustrated that a team of collaborative therapy providers may be most effective for chronic pain management. So if one method doesn’t suit you, maybe a combination will.

Methods to “Add to Cart” 

Retail therapy can help too, especially if you choose your purchases with an eye toward self-care, and managing your pain at home.

  • Heating Pad and Cooling Packs: These can make it easier for you to employ either hot or cold therapy to ease your pain. 
  • Wedge Pillow: The shape of a wedge pillow can help you sit comfortably in a way that eases hip and lower back pain
  • Lumbar Support Pillow: Placed behind your back, this pillow can improve your posture while seated, which may decrease your back pain. 
  • Yoga Mat: Do yoga in the comfort of your home with your own yoga mat and bricks.
  • Probiotics and Turmeric: These are both anti-inflammatories that can help ease chronic pain. 
  • Phone Apps: There are many phone apps that aim to help manage chronic pain. These apps do not directly resolve pain, but rather act as a pain log or diary to help communicate concerns and symptoms to your doctor. 

To learn more about chronic pain management, consult with your United Physicians Group provider. We will provide the best quality care possible to help you find a treatment method that works for you. Connect with us online or by calling (833) 523-0906.

Annual Physicals: The Key to Ensuring Your Child’s Health

Parents know to take their child to see a doctor when they’re injured or not feeling well, but ongoing preventive care is just as important as any “crisis” appointment. 

Sometimes referred to as a well-child visit or simply a “check-up,” annual physicals provide doctors the opportunity to assess your child’s overall health. Here’s a closer look at why these appointments shouldn’t be skipped. 

Why Are Physicals So Important for Children?

Wellness visits give care providers and parents the opportunity to discuss growth milestones, developmental concerns or issues, and your child’s general health. In addition to answering your own specific questions, the doctor may ask about your child’s sleep habits, diet, and physical activity. 

As a child grows, they can start to take autonomy over their health and may ask their own questions at these appointments. These exchanges allow doctors to make sure a child is on track with development, and establish an early, positive relationship. Additionally, physical exams and discussions of any changes or symptoms can help doctors catch potential issues early, when they’re easiest to treat.

Your child’s doctor can also administer any necessary immunizations or discuss your child’s vaccine schedule with you during this time. From birth to the age of 18, the CDC recommends a number of vaccinations and boosters to prevent a wide range of potentially serious illnesses, including hepatitis, tetanus, polio, measles, mumps, and meningitis.

What Happens During Your Child’s Physical?

According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, what takes place at children’s wellness exams will vary by age. For example, while height and weight are measured at all ages, head circumference may only be measured until the age of three to look for any neurologic or developmental issues. When it comes to height and weight measurements, medical professionals can plot a child’s growth on a chart to compare their development with children of the same age and gender.

The younger your child, the more involved a wellness visit may be. During infancy, for example, a doctor may check your baby’s head for bone formation, look for fluids in your baby’s ear, track eye movements, and assess the hip joints for any problems. They’ll also look in their mouth, listen to their heart and lungs, and check their abdomen. Infant reflexes are also examined during a baby’s checkup to gauge nervous system development. 

While doctor visits are frequent during a child’s early life, after the age of three, the schedule changes to annual check-ups

As your child grows, a provider will still check their vitals, including their pulse, breathing, blood pressure, and temperature. They may also check their vision and hearing. During late childhood and adolescence, providers may use this time to discuss important health and safety issues, such as personal hygiene, avoidance of drugs and alcohol, and the importance of wearing seatbelts and helmets. As they develop into teens, doctors may also provide opportunities for children to have more private conversations about sexual health.

If you’re seeking a team of doctors to provide personalized care for your children and family, turn to United Physicians Group. Find a doctor online or by calling (833) 523-0906.