Family medicine is a branch of medicine that deals with the diagnosis and treatment of medical conditions in patients of all ages. It is a relatively new field, having only been recognized as a specialty in the 1970s. A family medicine doctor is able to treat all members of the family. They treat both simple and complex medical problems as well as acute and chronic conditions. They are the 1st point of contact for most health concerns for a lot of families.
When you are trying to choose a primary care provider, let’s talk more about family doctors and what you can usually expect during your first appointment with one. Hopefully, this will help you make a better-informed decision about your health care.
Who Is a Family Doctor?
A family doctor is trained in family medicine, which encompasses a wide range of health services and covers all aspects of health for infants, children, teens, adults, and the elderly. Family medicine physicians with a broad knowledge of medicine and extensive training are highly qualified to provide comprehensive care to all patients. They get to know you and your health history well, so they can provide the best possible care for you and your loved ones.
In addition, they offer one of the most critical aspects of medicine: preventive care. They provide annual health checkups, wellness checks, immunizations, and screenings for diseases such as breast cancer and colon cancer. They also provide guidance on healthy lifestyle choices to help you stay well.
You can see a family doctor if you are feeling sick if you are in pain if you want to be healthier or sleep better, if you want to protect yourself against preventable diseases if you want to cut your risk of diseases, and if you are having difficulty managing chronic medical conditions.
Why Choose a Family Medicine Doctor?
Family medicine doctors often take care of entire families which allows them to get to know their patients well and develop long-term relationships with them. Because they treat patients of all ages, family doctors tend to have excellent communication skills and are able to build rapport with their patients quickly. They are also highly adaptable and comfortable working with diverse populations.
What Happens During Your First Visit with a Family Doctor?
What usually happens during your first visit to a family medicine doctor is that the doctor will take your vital signs and ask you about your medical history and any current health concerns, such as why you are visiting them and specifically what symptoms you are experiencing. Family doctors usually perform a physical examination on the first visit and order some tests to further investigate symptoms to diagnose conditions. Once the diagnosis is made, the doctor will develop a treatment plan.
How To Prepare for Your First Visit to a Family Doctor
There are a few things you can do to prepare for your first visit to a family medicine doctor. First, make sure you have your insurance information and any relevant medical history handy. It can also be helpful to write down any questions or concerns you have prior to the appointment. Finally, arrive early to get settled in before your appointment begins, and fill out the patient forms beforehand (usually available on the doctor’s website) to save time and have a smooth check-in process.
Family Doctor in Lakewood Ranch and Sarasota, FL
Intercoastal Medical Group has many family medicine doctors to serve your healthcare needs. Our family medicine physicians have additional training in different subspecialties, which allows them to provide you with more comprehensive, ongoing care. To schedule an appointment with one of our primary care doctors, you can search for a provider on our website, call our location nearest you, or use our online request form.