There are many things you will need to do in order to prepare for going to college. While packing up furniture, study supplies, and all your textbooks, make sure you also take time to do some simple health checks. You do not want to neglect your health while in school. Getting sick and missing important classes can really set you back, so if you are prepared, you can avoid many missed days. Below are a number of health screenings you should get before going to college.
Comprehensive Physical Exam
A comprehensive physical exam is a must for anyone starting college. In fact, many colleges require that students get a physical if they will be participating in sports or living on campus. A physical exam can reveal health problems, many of which are easier to treat when detected early. Your physician can also give you advice for staying healthy during college and how to care for ongoing health concerns.
Mental Health Screening
College can be an incredibly stressful time and school stress has been linked to depression, anxiety, and many other disorders. In fact, it is estimated that 9.5 percent of college students are depressed. If you already feel prone to these kinds of feelings it might benefit you to undergo a mental health screening before starting college.
Depression, anxiety and other mental health problems are easier to detect if they are looked into early on. Treating mental problems can also help students do better in the classroom and feel more confident in their work. A mental health screening can often identify whether a person is at risk for developing a mental problem as well.
Sexually-Transmitted Disease Screening
If you are currently sexually-active or planning to become sexually-active, then you will need to get a STD screening. There are 20 million new cases of sexually-transmitted diseases every year, and half of these are in people who are between the ages of 15 and 24.
It is important to note that it is possible to have a sexually-transmitted disease and not know it. In fact, some sexually-transmitted diseases, such as gonorrhea and chlamydia, do not produce any symptoms in some cases. This is why one of the best things you can do to protect yourself is to get tested on a regular basis.
Good vision is essential for doing well in the classroom which is why you want to make an appointment with your eye doctor before you start college. If you already wear glasses or contacts, then you may need to get your prescription updated. Keep in mind that if you are over the age of 18, then you may be a candidate for LASIK eye surgery. This is a procedure that can eliminate the need for contacts and glasses altogether making life in college a lot less hassle. Talk to LASIK surgeons in your local area to see if you qualify.
The health of your teeth and gums can affect the rest of your body, which is why a dental screening is important. A thorough cleaning and exam can prevent problems from occurring in the future. Not only will you need to get a dental screening before starting college, but you should also get one every six months.
Tuberculosis is an infectious disease that affects the lungs. It is bacteria that is spread through the air and coughing and sneezing can cause tuberculosis to spread. Although tuberculosis is rare in the United States, it is still a cause for concern because it can potentially be deadly. Additionally, tuberculosis can easily spread in a public place like a college campus.
TB testing can detect this disease, and skin tests are typically used to diagnose tuberculosis. However, more places are beginning to use blood tests.
Getting health screenings are something you should put at the top of your to-do list if you will be starting college soon. TB testing, a comprehensive physical exam, vision screening, and a dental checkup are some of the health checks you will need to get.
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Five Health Checks to Have Done Before Going to College