Why Are So Many of Our Parents Neglecting Their Healthcare?

With Mom

One day after work I was talking to my mother, and she was telling me that my dad was going to the doctor. “Okay, so what?” you might be thinking. I’m sorry, I forgot to mention that this would be his first doctor visit for the first time in 20 years. The man is sixty years old! He needed cancer screenings, a colonoscopy, a prostate exam, MRI’s for old injuries, blood tests, trust me the list goes on. Needless to say I was in utter disbelief, as was his primary care physician. When I shared this news with my friends they all had the same sentiment, “that sounds like my dad”, or “oh yeah my mom hasn’t been to the doctors in forever”.

Why are so many of our parents neglecting their healthcare? It could be due to fear of what they might hear at the doctors, for retired senior citizens it could be an issue of healthcare, or it could be that they’ve just been too busy for the last decade. Whatever the reason may be, it might be our turn to step in and encourage our parents to get to the doctor. Most of us are the generation of internet M.D.’s anyways. With all of the knowledge we possess just in the palms of our hands, let’s share that information with our parents and get them in the door of the doctor’s office before it’s too late.

It might be difficult for your parents to hear a demand such as this coming from their own child, so use your wiles! It might be incentive enough just to guilt them a little, especially if they’re grandparents. Express to them how important it is that they’re around for important events in yours and your children’s lives. 

Talk to them, and figure out if anything is severely bothering them. Do not be afraid to pry a bit and offer to research some of their symptoms, especially if they’ve begun to manifest physically. Give them the information they need to know about important checkups that need to be done at crucial points in their lives. 

Generally, your parents would also love to spend time with you and grandkids if you have any. They might be more willing to get to a doctor if you offer to go with them, especially if you offer to set everything up for them as well. Take the load off of their shoulders, and be a support system to them. 

Encouraging your parents to go to the doctor could be life changing. You could aid them in catching a disorder, disease, or even cancer in it’s earliest stages. Reach out and inquire with your mother or father when the last time they saw a physician was!

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Used under Creative Commons Licensing courtesy of Cristian Bortes

This article is made available for general, entertainment and educational purposes only. The opinions expressed herein do not necessarily reflect those of The Joint Corp (or its franchisees and affiliates). You should always seek the advice of a licensed healthcare professional.