The Foundation of Long-Term Health: Dr. Gregory Duhon, MD, on Preventative Medicine

The best way to treat diseases is to prevent them early or before they occur. That’s why, according to Dr. Gregory Duhon, MD, preventative medicine is often referred to as the foundation of long-term health.

Unfortunately, despite health-care systems, organizations and governments consistently pushing preventative care, there’s been a steep decline in clinical preventive services visits in the last few years.

According to Healthy People data, only 8.5% of adults 35 years and older received all of their recommended high-priority CPS. Yet, that number decreased to only 5.3% in 2020.

What’s more, 78.7% of adolescents between 12 and 17 years old had at least one preventative care visit in the prior 12 months as of the 2016-2017 survey period. That number declined, too, down to 69.6% by 2020-2021.

All of this points to just how vital it is for medical practitioners to consistently push the importance of preventative medicine. Here’s why.

What Is Preventative Medicine?

Preventative medicine encompasses a wide range of interventions and screenings that seek to identify health issues before significant symptoms arise. Doing this helps to promote well-being and long-term health.

Some screenings focus on conditions such as diabetes and heart disease for adults. There’s also counseling available to improve aspects of your lifestyle, such as eating healthy and stopping smoking. Plus, there are annual primary care visits to discuss generic issues and to get annual vaccinations against diseases such as COVID-19 and flu.

For children, there are regular checkups, screenings and vaccinations that are typically scheduled on a more regular basis. This helps to ensure that children are meeting their developmental milestones, and that any potential issues are caught early.

One of the most important topics of discussion at these regular PCP visits is family history, as that can play a significant role in one’s likelihood of developing certain conditions or diseases.

Why is Preventative Medicine Important?

Annual checkups and recommended screenings allow medical practitioners to identify potential health issues before they become too serious. Sometimes, these screenings can even prevent health issues from happening at all.

For instance, routine bloodwork can identify a person’s blood sugar levels. If they indicate that someone’s blood sugar is high, a doctor can recommend changes in diet and exercise that can help the person avoid being diagnosed with diabetes in the future.

By preventing diabetes before someone experiences symptoms, a medical practitioner will help their patient be healthier, reduce their health-related costs and avoid having to do things such as prick their fingers to test their blood sugar.

Preventative medicine is widely accepted as crucial to people’s overall health, so much so that many health insurance plans completely cover the cost of these annual visits and preventative screenings.

Stopping Diseases Before They Really Start

Dr. Gregory Duhon, MD, also points out that preventative medicine greatly stops diseases before they really start. Cancer screenings, for instance, can identify many different cancers before patients even experience any symptoms.

The earlier cancer is identified, the more likely it is that a successful treatment plan can be put into place to fight it. It becomes tougher and tougher to successfully treat cancer the longer it’s allowed to live in the body.

That’s why certain cancer screenings are recommended for all adults starting as early as age 45 for colorectal cancer.

Ensuring you adhere to preventative medicine best practices helps to prolong your life and build a healthy foundation for the future.

About Dr. Gregory Duhon, MD

Dr. Gregory Duhon, MD, is the driving force behind American Consulting Physicians, a trailblazing telemedicine venture. As an accomplished Internal Medicine Physician and Hospitalist with a profound grasp of ICU, emergency room, and crisis/pandemic management, Dr. Duhon is leveraging his expertise to provide acute and chronic medical care services remotely across 15 states, including Alabama, Georgia, Colorado, and more. His specialization in complex conditions and willingness to extend patient consultations underscore his commitment to elevating healthcare. Beyond his business pursuits, Dr. Duhon’s diverse interests encompass Ironman training, culinary exploration, passion fruit cultivation, and a dedication to advancing accessible and exceptional medical care.

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