Has it been a long time since you’ve been to a checkup? Can’t afford the doctor bills? We want to share information with you about our Free Women’s Wellness Program, which we offer to women regardless if they are pregnant or not. In this post, we will also talk about what is included during a wellness exam.
We understand that women deserve routine checkups, but many women in the U.S. don’t have adequate healthcare to go to a doctor. We are proud to offer healthcare support and hope to women in our community! Annual check-ups can detect early signs of cancers, give you an opportunity to talk to a doctor about health concerns, and give you peace of mind. Wellness is extremely important if a woman is wanting to get pregnant or if she is recovering from a pregnancy, or even if she is a busy “soccer mom” and needs to be her best! Check-ups are also important in later stages of life when you are at a statistically higher risk for certain cancers.
You can qualify for a free exam if you:
Have NOT had a wellness exam in the past year
Are a woman, age 18 or older
Have any state-issued photo ID
DO NOT have private health insurance or Medicaid
Then you could qualify for a wellness examination! Call us at the number below to request more information and to set up an appointment.
What To Expect At A Wellness Exam, & Why It Is Important To Have An Exam Every Year:
Exercising, keeping a healthy weight, and not smoking is not enough for total wellness. To keep most of us in good health, you have to include an annual exam to be reassured you are as healthy as you feel. Blood work, pap smear, pelvic exam, and vitals are things only a doctor can check to ensure all is well.
An annual exam for a woman most often includes:
1. An opportunity to discuss any new health issues that you are concerned about. Do you get headaches often, have trouble sleeping, feel a lump under your arm or breast, or struggle with mood swings and depression? If you have any symptoms, you can discuss it with your doctor at an annual wellness exam.
2. A review of your life behaviors: smoking, alcohol use, sexual health, diet, and exercise. If you struggle in any of these areas, your doctor can help you get back on track, offer medication, or suggestions. It’s important to always be open and honest with your doctor when they ask you if you take illicit drugs or how much you drink. Your doctor is not there to judge you but to genuinely help you live your best life. Also, some medications can not be taken with other drugs or alcohol so your doctor needs honest answers from you so you are given safe help.
3. Vital signs are taken: Blood pressure, heart rate, breathing rate (respiration rate), and temperature. Vital signs can indicate an underlying condition like high blood pressure, ora high temperature can indicate infection. These tests are generally painless and take about 5 minutes.
4. The medical provider listens to your heart and lungs and touches your abdomen and assesses overall appearance.
Do you appear sick or well?
Is your skin dry or moist?
Do you have trouble speaking?
Do you hear okay?
5. A breast exam is done. Breast cancer is the most common cancer found in women (besides skin cancers.) Even though this exam is slightly invasive, a breast exam is painless and quick and helps a doctor rule out breast cancer. A few moments to check will give you peace of mind.
6. Lab tests are ordered. Blood work is important to make sure your body is not deficient in minerals, your blood count is normal, and to detect for underlying issues that can only be found in the blood. This too can give you peace of mind that all is well inside your body.
7. If you are at risk for sexually transmitted infections then this testing is done.
Your doctor will ask you about your sex life, and it’s important to answer honestly to see if you are at risk for STD/STI’s. Sometimes the symptoms are not visible at first, which is why it’s important to test for these if you are at risk. Part of this testing includes a pap smear and pelvic exam. (For a woman who has had no sexual relations it might not be performed).
8. Pap Smears
Cervical cancer is preventable by having a pap smear yearly. A Pap smear is a quick and simple test used to check for changes to the cells of the cervix that may lead to cervical cancer. The Doctor will check the external female genitals or “private parts.”
A pap smear is a quick and easy exam and is done by placing an instrument called a
speculum (looks like a duckbill) into the vagina to look at the cervix (opening to the
uterus) and a sample of cells is taken and sent to the lab.
9. Pelvic Exams
The pelvic exam is done by the practitioner by inserting two fingers into the vagina and the other hand is on the lower abdomen to feel the size of the uterus and the ovaries. This is done to check the size of the uterus and ovaries to make sure there are no abnormalities felt.
If you want to know more about how to schedule a wellness exam, or if you have more healthcare and wellness related questions, please call us today! Our staff would love to help you!