Even for people who may be in poor health, it's a catch-22; you definitely need to see the doctor more frequently, but a yearly physical may be too general. People with chronic conditions such as diabetes, high cholesterol, or hypertension should be seeing their doctor for regular follow-ups anyway, so a physical is pretty unnecessary since their main concerns are addressed during these appointments.
Annual physicals can cause unnecessary stress
Luckily, insurance usually covers the cost of a yearly physical. But sometimes, the exams can be more expensive than just the doctor's visit copay.
"By seeing someone unnecessarily, too frequently, there's a danger of over-testing, over-diagnosing patients, and ordering tests that are not necessary," Dr. Thaler says.