Post written by Jonathan Finks, M.D.
Last Thursday in my afternoon clinic I watched quietly while a middle-aged woman tried to coax her resistant, slightly confused, ailing mother into allowing me to examine her. “Remember mom, doctors heal people. They help fix the sick. That’s why we’re here.”
It occurred to me that I hadn’t seen the 40-something daughter in my clinic for over three years and that I had already observed signs of her following in her obese, debilitated mother’s footsteps. On their way out, I asked how she was doing.
Her response was, “A bit tired and overworked.” I said she needed to make an appointment to come see me and she replied, “No, doc. I’m not sick.” I wished I had more time to convince her that she didn’t need to be ill to benefit greatly from an appointment.
Benefits Of Seeing A Doctor
Many people avoid doctors because they associate them with illness and inadequacy in themselves. Reminding people that seeing a doctor can help them avoid illness, keep them healthy, and make them the best they can be is a critical concept that has become more important in today’s age of managed health care.
The adage ‘an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure’ is especially and critically true when applied to health care. Rather than treating a condition after it has progressed, preventive care focuses on avoiding disease and maintaining optimum health. Extensive studies prove that when it comes to beating life-threatening illnesses, early diagnosis is key. Early diagnosis often means before symptoms present themselves.
What Is Internal Medicine?
Doctors of internal medicine, also known as internists or ‘Doctors for Adults,’ receive special training that focuses specifically on the care of adults in all stages of life. In addition to diagnosing common illnesses and providing guidance with preventive care, an internist is trained to solve puzzling diagnostic problems and treat complex chronic illnesses.
Caring for Patients . . . For Life
Establishing a relationship with an internist you trust is like enlisting a partner who invests their knowledge and experience in your own personal well being. An internist’s job is to care for their patients for life – in the office, during hospitalizations, in nursing homes. In today’s complex medical environment, that kind of consistency is imperative for quality care. When other medical specialists are involved, internists coordinate their patient’s treatment, ensuring the critical transfer of information regarding their patient’s history, expectations, and concerns.
Keys To Health And Longevity
The blueprint for preventive health care remains the same even after years of medical advancement and discoveries. The basics bear repeating. A healthy lifestyle is composed of a number of factors. Among the most important are:
Eating a healthy and well-balanced diet
Engaging in regular exercise
Managing your stress
Getting restful sleep
Using alcohol in moderation
In addition, find a doctor you trust and see them regularly. Routine health care visits are used to monitor many conditions, including heart disease, high cholesterol, hypertension, osteoporosis, and obesity, and they provide opportunities to screen those at risk for the most common cancers.
Establish A Relationship With An Internist
More than an ounce of prevention includes establishing a relationship with an internist who has been trained to help you invest in your future well-being, one who provides you with care for all stages of your life.
Bio: Jonathan Finks, M.D.
Dr. Jonathan Finks graduated from the University of Kansas Medical School with a Doctorate of Medicine in 1999. He completed his combined residency in Internal Medicine and Pediatrics at the University of Kansas Medical Center where he served as Chief Resident in 2003. Dr. Finks is board certified in both Internal Medicine and Pediatrics and is a member of the American Medical Association, American Academy of Pediatrics, and the Kansas Medical Society. Dr. Finks sees patients at the Menorah Medical Center office in Overland Park. In his spare time, he enjoys indoor soccer, canoeing, attending theatre and having adventures with his wife, young daughter, and a big yellow lab.