It's easy to stay in touch with your primary care doctor using secure online health-management tools.

Going to the doctor regularly is one of the easiest ways to maintain your health. Whether you’re looking for preventive health services or a way to feel better because you’re sick, forming a lifelong partnership with a primary care doctor optimizes your general health and well-being.

As an internist at Mecklenburg Medical Group in SouthPark, the relationships I’ve developed with patients start with conversations about family history and health concerns. Primary care physicians consider the big picture and work to individualize your personal health goals with you as you move through different phases of life.

For example, if you’d like to eat healthier, there are a number of simple and affordable lifestyle changes that you can make:

• Pack your lunch and eat out less often.
• Cut back on hidden sugars.
• Make exercise a priority by building workouts into your weekly schedule.
• Cut back on salt, sugar and flour.

One of the best questions patients can ask during a visit is: “What is the most important change I can make to improve my health?”

As you work toward personal health goals, your doctor will help you with any hurdles or questions. The relationship doesn’t stop after an appointment. People can now send secure messages to their doctors, view doctors’ notes, check lab and test results, and track their health through online health-management tools.

Having an experienced partner whom you trust to help guide you through screenings, vaccines and sickness makes a difference. A relationship of mutual respect and trust helps you stay healthier as you work through health solutions together.

By Ryan Shelton, MD, Mecklenburg Medical Group-SouthPark

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