Why You Should Get an Annual Preventive Exam

Many people, especially those that are young and healthy, consider skipping their annual health check-ups. However, even the healthiest among us should attend yearly preventative exams. While it may feel like a chore, annual check-ups are crucial to caring for your body and averting major health risks. 

The key reasons why you should get an annual preventive exam include:

Improve Your Quality of Life

Even young, healthy people have health questions and concerns. While your question may not require an urgent appointment, having it answered at your annual physical is important. By addressing all of your health concerns, both large and small, your doctor can help alleviate medical anxieties and improve your quality of life. 

Better Understanding Your Health Risks 

By attending a physical every year, you and your doctor will gather the information for what’s known as a health baseline. This baseline gives you an overview of your health, including possible disease risk factors. With this information, your doctor can advise you on lifestyle modifications that can improve your overall health and lower your risk of disease. 

Stay Up-To-Date on Screenings and Vaccinations

As you grow older, there are many preventative screenings that you’ll need to undergo regularly. Staying up-to-date on these screenings will help prevent chronic disease, rather than treat illnesses after they develop. Examples of important screenings include colon cancer screenings, pap smears, breast cancer screenings, prostate cancer screenings, and bone density tests. 

Additionally, you may need to receive various vaccinations. While many vaccinations are administered in childhood, adults also need certain immunizations, such as flu shots, the shingles vaccine, and tetanus shots. 

Scheduling your annual preventative exam is a crucial step to take for your ongoing health. At Florida Wellness Medical Group, we provide comprehensive primary care services, including annual preventative and wellness exams. To book your appointment, reach out to us today.  


5 Myths About the Flu Vaccine Debunked

The Flu, or influenza, is a contagious respiratory disease. It is caused by influenza viruses and ranges in severity, where the most severe cases can lead to death. 

A vaccine for the flu became available in the U.S. in the 1940s, and it’s now updated every year for protection against new strains of the virus. Although this vaccine is the most effective way to prevent severe illness from the flu, there are many myths surrounding it that discourage people from getting vaccinated. 

Here, we’ll debunk five of the most common myths about the flu. These include:

The Vaccine Will Give Me the Flu.

The flu vaccine contains an inactivated virus. This means that you can’t get the flu from the vaccine. However, some people experience mild fever and body aches, which is the immune system’s reaction to the vaccine and typically subside within a day or two. 

Pregnant Women Shouldn’t Get the Vaccine. 

Many pregnant women have the misconception that it’s dangerous for them to get the flu vaccine, but this is a myth! Pregnant women should get the flu vaccine because it triggers the production of antibodies, which will be passed onto the unborn baby. These antibodies will protect the child against the flu vaccine while they’re too young to receive the vaccine themself. 

The Flu Vaccine Doesn’t Work Because I Got Vaccinated and Still Got the Flu. 

Since there are many flu viruses moving through a community at any one time, you can still get the flu even if you’ve been vaccinated. That being said, people who are vaccinated have a significantly lower chance of catching the illness.

If I Have an Egg Allergy, I Can’t Get the Flu Vaccine.

Patients with egg allergies are cleared to receive the flu shot, and are no longer required to be monitored for 30 minutes after the shot is administered. If you have a severe egg allergy, you should receive your flu shot in an inpatient or outpatient medical setting

The Flu Shot Can Have Serious Side Effects. 

Side effects from the flu shot are very rare, with Guillain-Barré Syndrome occurring in just one in a million patients. 

To learn more about the flu shot and protecting yourself against the illness, schedule an appointment at Florida Wellness Medical Group today! 


COVID, Cold, Flu, or Allergies: How to Tell the Difference?

As the world recovers from the COVID-19 pandemic, a cough, sore throat, or even a sneeze can make people wonder if they’ve been infected with coronavirus. However, there are many conditions that can cause symptoms similar to those of COVID-19, including the flu, allergies, and even the common cold. Differentiating between these conditions can be challenging, but we’ve compiled information to help you identify the telltale signs of each. 


COVID-19 is a viral infection caused by the coronavirus SARS-CoV-2. It was identified in 2019 and has spurred a pandemic due to its contagiousness and potential to cause severe respiratory illness. 

The symptoms of COVID-19 can vary greatly from case to case. Some people have asymptomatic cases, meaning that they don’t experience any symptoms from the virus. However, potential symptoms of COVID-19 include:

  • Fever/chills
  • Cough
  • Fatigue
  • Trouble breathing/shortness of breath
  • Headache
  • Sore throat
  • Nasal congestion
  • New loss of taste or smell
  • Muscle aches/body aches
  • Nausea/vomiting
  • Diarrhea

The Common Cold

The common cold and COVID-19 are both viral infections. While COVID-19 is caused by the SARS-CoV-2 virus, colds are usually caused by rhinoviruses. 

Many symptoms of a common cold are also potential symptoms of COVID. However, a cold will never cause nausea, vomiting, or diarrhea, which sometimes occurs with COVID-19. Additionally, COVID-19 usually causes a fever, fatigue, and muscle aches, while the common cold only sometimes causes these symptoms. 

The Flu

The flu and COVID-19 share many symptoms, including fever, fatigue, headache, body aches, vomiting, and diarrhea. Both of these viral infections can also be severe and may even lead to death, namely in immunocompromised patients. However, there are some symptoms of COVID-19 that don’t occur with the flu, including difficulty breathing and a new loss of taste or smell. 


Allergies, unlike COVID-19, aren’t caused by a virus. Instead, they are caused by your immune system’s response to allergens, such as pollen or pet dander. However, allergies and COVID-19 can cause some of the same symptoms, including cough, fatigue, and nasal congestion. That said, allergies will never cause fever, muscle aches, nausea, vomiting, or diarrhea, which are possible symptoms of COVID-19. Allergies also typically won’t cause difficulty breathing or shortness of breath, which are common symptoms of COVID-19. 

If you’re feeling unwell, visit one of the trained physicians at Florida Wellness Medical Group today. We can provide the medical care that you need to make a full recovery. 


6 Tips on Staying Healthy During the Winter Months

In the winter, sickness seems to spread more aggressively than in any other season. This is partly because viruses survive more easily in lower temperatures and humidity, but also because people tend to spend more time inside, in confined spaces, than they do in the summer. 

It may be more common to get sick in the winter. But, there are several ways for you to protect your health and avoid sickness all winter long! Here are our top tips:

Get Vaccinated. 

Receiving the COVID-19 vaccine according to CDC guidelines and your annual flu shot can protect you against these formidable viral infections. Both COVID-19 and the flu are contagious viruses that can cause symptoms including fever, headache, body aches, and sore throat, just to name a few. 

Focus on Nutrition. 

Proper nutrition can make a big difference in the health of your immune system. Eating a balanced diet including unprocessed meat, seafood, poultry, beans, eggs, nuts, and seeds, along with whole grains and plenty of vibrant fruits and vegetables, can help your immune system work at its best.  

Get High-Quality Sleep. 

High-quality sleep recharges your body and strengthens your immune system. People need between 7 and 9 hours of sleep each night. To prep, your body for sleep, wind down and avoid screens at least an hour before bedtime. 

Keep Stress Levels Low. 

Managing your stress well can help you avoid sickness this winter. Frequently feeling stressed out can diminish the strength of your immune system, making you more vulnerable to getting an infection. Carve out time to relax in your day and practice stress management tactics, such as meditation and yoga. 

Exercise Regularly. 

Regular exercise can protect your health throughout the winter. Even just 15 to 30 minutes of moderate exercise every day can keep your body functioning at its best, and that includes your immune system! Exercise bolsters your immune system and can help fend off infection. 

Remember to Wash Your Hands. 

It may sound obvious, but washing your hands regularly can work wonders towards protecting your health this winter. Washing your hands before you eat, after returning home, and after touching communal surfaces can keep you from catching a virus. 

For reliable medical care this winter and all year long, you can count on Florida Wellness Medical Group. Schedule an appointment at our office today!

What Are Common Screenings Done During a Health Check-Up?

Health check-ups are important throughout every stage of life to prevent disease and ensure your overall wellness. During a check-up, your doctor may perform screenings for various diseases and conditions. These screenings are intended to identify health conditions in their early stages before you experience symptoms so that they can be treated as effectively as possible. Continue reading

Five Preventive Services You Should Receive

Maintaining your long-term health and wellbeing is possible with preventive care services. While not all medical conditions are avoidable, many of the risk factors of diseases and conditions are preventable. So, with preventive care, patients can make informed decisions to best protect their health for years to come. 

There are several different preventive services available to support the well-being of you and your family. Among the most important preventive services are:Continue reading

Warning Signs of Heart Disease

According to the CDC, heart disease is the main cause of death among men, women, and the majority of racial and ethnic groups in the U.S. With this in mind, the importance of promptly identifying and treating heart disease is undeniable. Knowing the warning signs of heart disease can help patients seek the medical care that they need to improve their heart health. 

The Main Signs and Symptoms of Heart Disease

Shortness of Breath

Shortness of breath can occur when blood obstructs the veins going to the heart from the lungs. As a result, fluid escapes into the lungs, leading to shortness of breath. This can occur both while the body is active and while it’s at rest. 

Persistent Coughing

Persistent coughing or wheezing is also a symptom of fluid buildup in the lungs. In some cases, people with heart problems cough up mucus with blood in it. 

Chest Pain 

While there are several potential causes of chest pain that are unrelated to the heart, it’s the main sign of a lack of blood flow to the heart. This type of chest pain can feel different to different people. For example, while some people may experience a sharp pain in the chest, others may feel like the chest is heavy. Chest pain due to heart problems can also range in severity and is typically triggered by physical activity or strong emotions. 

Swelling in The Lower Legs

Heart problems can cause swelling in the lower legs. This is because when the heart isn’t functioning properly, it can lead to slower circulation. As a result, fluid may accumulate in the tissues, leading to swelling. 

Given that heart disease develops gradually, many people don’t identify the early symptoms as signs of heart problems. But, receiving a diagnosis and treatment as soon as possible reduces the risk of heart attack and stroke. For a medical evaluation, schedule an appointment with Florida Wellness Medical Group today.

What You Should Know About B12 Deficiency

Vitamin B12: It’s become a more prevalent topic in recent years as more people have decided to eliminate animal products from their diets. Vitamin B12 comes from foods derived from animals, making it difficult for vegans and vegetarians to get enough of the vitamin to stay healthy. That said, there are supplements and fortified foods that can be used to add vitamin B12 to a plant-based diet. 

Understanding the causes, symptoms, and risks of vitamin B12 deficiency can help prevent it. So, let’s discuss deficiencies in this essential vitamin and what you can do to get enough of it in your diet. 

Vitamin B12 Basics

Vitamin B12 aids in the production of DNA, blood cells, and nerve cells. It also plays a critical role in the body’s metabolic, immune, and brain functions. Vitamin B12 is only found naturally in animal products, including meat, shellfish, eggs, and dairy. So, vegans and vegetarians are at an increased risk of developing a B12 deficiency. 

Symptoms of Vitamin B12 Deficiency

Vitamin B12 deficiency can cause many different symptoms, including:

  • Fatigue
  • Weakness
  • Dizziness
  • Shortness of breath
  • Changes in mood
  • Glossitis, which is an inflamed tongue

Risks of Long-Term B12 Deficiency

If left untreated, B12 deficiency can have serious complications, including nerve damage, mobility changes, anemia, depression, and dementia. This is why it’s important to recognize the earlier symptoms of vitamin B12 deficiency and visit your doctor to determine the best course of action. 

Vitamin B12 For Vegans and Vegetarians

Vegans and vegetarians can reduce their risk of B12 deficiency by ensuring that they consume enough of the vitamin from sources that fit the confines of their diets. Vegetarians who eat dairy and eggs can aim to get B12 from one of these sources every day. For vegans, supplements of B12-fortified foods can help them avoid deficiency. 

Florida Wellness Medical Group provides expert medical care for concerns including vitamin B12 deficiency. Contact us today to schedule an appointment. 

Most Common Summer Health Problems

We want you to enjoy the summer season and all of its perks. But, to get the most out of the summer festivities, it’s important to keep your health in mind. Here, we’ve compiled the most common summer health problems so that you can be well this season. 

Food Poisoning

Due to the hotter and more humid weather in the summer, cases of food poisoning are much higher. In greater heat and humidity, bacteria grow on food much faster, making food poisoning more likely. To avoid food poisoning this summer, make sure to keep perishable foods refrigerated. Leaving food out for as little as 1 hour on a hot day could lead to food poisoning. If you’re having an outdoor event, make sure that the perishable foods are kept in a cooler with plenty of ice. 

Asthma Attacks

There are many factors that can raise the risk of asthma attacks in the summer, including elevated pollen levels, mold growth caused by humidity, and additional air pollution. For people with asthma, these factors make for a higher risk of asthma attacks. Checking pollen counts and air pollution online for your area can be helpful. If you can, stay inside when levels of pollen and/or air pollution are high. 


Summer is the time to spend more time in the sunshine. While time in the sun can provide a much-needed mood boost and a dose of vitamin D, it also leads to UV-ray exposure. The sun’s harsh UV rays can cause painful sunburns that may put your summer on hold. But, more dangerously, UV-ray exposure can also increase your risk of developing skin cancer. 

When you get a sunburn, it means that the sun’s UV rays have done irreversible damage to a portion of the DNA in your skin cells. This damage can accumulate over the years and may eventually lead to skin cancer. So, to protect yourself against sunburn and skin cancer this summer, make sure to wear sunscreen every day and reapply if you’re spending time outside. 

For answers to all of your summer health questions, schedule an appointment at Florida Wellness Medical Group. 

Why Vaccines Are Important for Adults

While some people only associate vaccines with children, it’s also important for adults to receive vaccinations. With the COVID-19 vaccine being a prevalent topic today, there’s no better time to discuss the importance of vaccines for your health, as well as the health of the community at large. 

The Importance of Vaccines for Adults

Stay Safe Against Serious Disease

Adults can stay safe against serious diseases that are preventable by vaccines, including tetanus, diphtheria, pertussis, pneumococcal, measles, mumps, rubella, and HPV, among others. Even the flu can be potentially life-threatening, making it crucial for adults to receive a flu shot every year.

Many vaccines are administered during childhood but may require a booster shot later in life. Additionally, if there are vaccines that you didn’t receive as a child, you may be able to get them as an adult to gain protection against certain illnesses. 

Keep Others from Getting Sick

Vaccines not only prevent you from getting sick; they also prevent the spread of serious diseases. When you’re vaccinated for a disease, you won’t spread it to others — including those who are immunocompromised and more likely to get seriously ill. To keep the entire population safe from infectious diseases, it’s important for all adults to receive the recommended immunizations. 

Protect Your Health and Livelihood

As if the discomfort and health risks associated with getting sick aren’t enough, an illness can bring your regular schedule to a halt. If you come down sick, you may have to put your work and family responsibilities on hold, as well as the activities that you love. By getting vaccinated, you can stop a sudden illness from becoming an obstacle.

Visiting your primary care doctor for your annual physical will help keep you up-to-date on vaccinations. At Florida Wellness Medical Group, our trained physicians can make vaccine recommendations for your long-term health. Contact us today to schedule an appointment.