It’s time for the annual PSA about preventable disease

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Once per year, I drive to Pittsburgh for a full-blown physical aimed at making sure that you’ll have to deal with me for at least another year. (Bad news for you, again.) Six years ago, a routine physical became the first step in a process that resulted in a diagnosis with Crohn’s disease, which I didn’t even suspect that I had and which has been treated into full remission.

Other far more serious diseases also can be spotted early, or prevented entirely, with an annual physical. For men 40 and older, prostate cancer often can be successfully managed and cured if caught early. Ditto for colon cancer, which can actually be prevented if polyps that would eventually morph into tumors are found and removed with a colonoscopy.

From heart problems to a wide range of other maladies, committing to seeing a doctor for a full physical every year is smart and it’s prudent and, ultimately, it’s the best way to protect your family against the possibility of you being not around to provide them with financial, physical, and emotional support.

So take care of your family by taking care of yourself. And you can start the process of taking care of yourself by getting a physical. The worst part of it really isn’t that bad.

Which is easy for me to say, because I’m a year away from the next one.