Northwest Asia Weekly
The global pandemic has increased people’s awareness of physical and mental health. On this Father’s Day, two fathers and a medical expert shared their views on the importance of paying more attention to health.
Samuel Sim, the executive director of Puget Sound Labor Agency, is 40 years old and the father of two children, one is 6 years old and the other is 4 years old.
From the age of 40, Sim began to realize that he was not as healthy as before, and his body could not adapt to normal wear and tear. He knew that as the milestones approach, there will be more routine screenings, but this is not the most important. He believes that more marketing and promotion is needed around it.
“When something is painful, I wait and wait, thinking it will correct itself, but that is not the case. I need to be more cautious instead of waiting for my body to give me a signal before going to the hospital.”
Set health reminder
Sim uses a wearable device to monitor his high blood pressure. When his blood pressure rises slightly, it will remind him to back up and breathe. He will set reminders to go out to work and try to achieve certain goals.
He thanked his wife for reminding him to see a doctor and even made an appointment for him.
“Providing health care for children is automatic and instant. There is no cost, but for us, there is a cost,” he explained his children’s health care priorities.
Sim said he didn’t do much for his mental health because he didn’t expect it, even if he realized it.
Sim likes to play golf and admits that he has bad shoulders. His shoulder needed an MRI, but his medical team performed X-rays on his bones. He knew that the problem was not his bones, but his muscles.
As expected, his X-rays showed that his bones were good, but now he has to wait for the cost to come out. He pointed out that in South Korea, basic routine inspections and other complaints can be resolved in one visit, but in the United States, you have completed the basic work and then need to be referred to an expert, who will charge you more.
“We are not a prevention system, we are a treatment system,” he was referring to the U.S. healthcare system.
When too much physical exercise
Physical exercise is good and bad for your health.
For the 41-year-old Jonathan Chang, the father of four and a partner of Trend Forward Capital, basketball is both a blessing and a curse.
“As an adult, I know my body very well and everything is working. If I can play basketball, then my body is very good,” he said.
Although Zhang uses basketball to measure his physical health, high-intensity exercise is also the cause of most of his physical health problems.
Over the past ten years or so, Zhang has suffered many physical challenges due to playing basketball — he underwent three major surgeries — one back surgery and two knee surgery. He visits a physical therapist regularly for about two and a half years, and to this day, he still sees a chiropractor once a week to adjust his muscles and joints.
He said the pandemic prevented him from seeing a doctor for a few years. Last year, at the peak of the epidemic, he originally planned to attend his 40th birthday.
If he has endured physical pain for at least five days, he usually decides to see a specialist.
“If by the fifth day, the pain still persists, then I will arrange an appointment,” he said.
Seek medical advice
Scott Sato, who is certified as a physician assistant at the International Community Health Service (ICHS) of the Holly Park Clinic, said that ICHS refers to the US Preventive Task Force’s guidelines for all preventive health checks.
“Men usually say that everything is fine, but his wife will say that he needs to check,” Sato explained.
Sato had a 60-year-old man and his wife to check. He asked how he was doing. The man said that everything was fine and there was no problem, but his wife had a different story. She told Sato that her husband had always behaved strangely, differently, was absent, and had forgotten a lot, so Sato immediately ordered a CT scan.
Scans revealed that the man had a hemorrhagic stroke about two weeks old. His wife knew what had happened, but the man said he was fine. Glad that his wife was there to share observations.
“Many signs of cancer seem to be very non-specific. Even if you have no symptoms, go for a check. We can find something asymptomatic during the check, because many problems have no symptoms.” He said.
Sato said that the most common problem for male patients—especially older men—is pain or difficulty urinating.
“Men will have these problems, but they don’t have high blood pressure. They don’t necessarily think it’s a problem because they don’t feel anything,” he said.
Mental health is as important as physical health
Sato explained that many patients of ICHS include immigrants from Asia and East Africa, many of whom do not know what depression and anxiety are.
“This will manifest in their complaints as feeling tired, unable to sleep, or even chronic abdominal pain. It will take a while to figure it out, but nothing is abnormal, so you think it may be psychological, not like the Western world. , They realized that I had a problem.”
Sato added that many people don’t want to see behavioral health experts because they think, “I’m not crazy.” Even if he persuades them to see experts, they won’t go to them in the end.
“In this population, mental health is more difficult to manage,” he said.
In Sato’s practice, they regard the entire family, parents and their children as patients. He often visits his father, checks their charts, and mentions that he hasn’t seen them for a long time. If they have If so, encourage them to make an appointment out of date.
Sato’s advice to the general population is that if there is any change in your feelings, then this is a sign that needs to be checked. For example, unintentional weight loss, more frequent abdominal pain and bowel movements, and nausea.
Nina can be at [email protected].