Prepping For That Insurance Physical

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People commonly feel some apprehension before any kind of exam and a physical examination for insurance purposes is no exception. My colleague, Brion Collins of Lake Country Wealth Management, has put together a list of recommendations to help get the best results.

Here are his tips:
1.    Try to schedule a morning appointment since people are typically more relaxed in the morning than in the afternoon.
2.    Avoid caffeine and heavy food on the day of the exam. It’s best to stick to decaf and a light breakfast.
3.    Abstain from drinking alcohol for 24 hours prior to the exam. Alcohol can elevate blood pressure for 12 to 14 hours.
4.    Get a good night’s sleep, and do not engage in heavy exercise the night before the exam.
5.    If you are a smoker, do not smoke prior to the exam since smoking constricts artery walls and tends to elevate blood pressure.
6.    Go easy on the salt for three to four days before the exam. Salt causes you to retain fluid. Reducing your intake tends to have a beneficial effect on your blood pressure.
7.    Give your complete medical history to the best of your knowledge. Be certain the examiner correctly lists the doctors and hospitals where you have been treated in the past. The insurance company will probably contact them. Do not try to hide any of your medical history since this tends to make it look worse than it is.
8.    Arrive a few minutes early for your appointment. A short period of relaxation does wonders for your blood pressure. A personal trainer I know, Dwight Sandevold, suggests sitting still, taking six deep breaths and releasing the air very slowly through your mouth.
9.    Plan on at least 30 minutes for a full exam, plus another 30 if chest x-rays and EKGs are included.
10.    Finally, relax. The insurance company is looking for average people, not a super person, so relax as much as possible during the examination. Life insurance underwriting is based on your entire medical history, not just the current exam.

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