In a Reddit thread which has gone viral with more than 40,000 comments, medical professionals have been sharing the things that they wish everybody knew about their own body, and the healthcare tips that everybody should incorporate into their lifestyle.
“Many simpler diseases in the body can be compared to a car,” said one doctor. “When you don’t get regular checkups and take regular care, it’s not like you’ll notice something bad happening right away. Just like how you won’t notice a missed oil change a couple thousand miles later. But diseases like diabetes, high blood pressure, alcohol dependence, etc, they all sneak up on you. Just like how eventually, that engine won’t run as smooth.”
“You often will feel normal even with high blood pressure,” agreed another. “It’s often found incidentally. So don’t wait until it gives you symptoms you don’t want to go through.” They advised that anybody over the age of 35 get their blood pressure checked at least once a year.
In addition to being proactive in monitoring our own health, doctors also advise brushing up on our family medical history, as this can play a hugely important role in diagnosing and preventing diseases.
“Prevention is becoming more and more important in medicine, and treating a disease in its early stages is a lot better than catching it late,” said one comment. “If you have family members who had ovarian or colon cancer in their 30s, that is very significant for your own risk. The screening and tests we run might change, depending. If you want to start the pill, it’s important to know about breast cancer, DVTs, clotting disorders in the family. If you’re a bit overweight and have no metabolic syndrome problems in the family, compared to a bit overweight but both your parents have type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease, the management priorities change. Asking your family about any recurring diseases or diseases that occurred early (20s, 30s, maybe 40s) can be helpful.”
Elsewhere, doctors who know just how expensive healthcare can be want to help patients save money by steering them away from unhelpful or downright fake “fads”, like detox products. “Your kidneys and liver cheerfully do all the toxin elimination you’ll ever need,” said one comment, adding: “Cleanses and other ‘detoxifying’ products are bullshit woo and a waste of money. The people who sell them are predators who only care about your money becoming theirs.” Others chimed in to confirm this, with one newly qualified doctor saying: “Unless you have liver or kidney failure, your body detoxes itself really well. Don’t get scammed by these detox teas and whatever!”