There's no substitute for going to the doctor. But it's critical to observe your body in between checkups so that you can ask the right questions and keep an eye on any changes as they happen. That's why it's great to give yourself your own at home health checkups between visits. It's another tool in your toolkit to taking care of your body, and it's especially good to start the habit when you're young.
"Performing these exams will be able to alert you to any changes your body is going through, for better or worse," health and wellness coach Caleb Backe tells Bustle. "Being aware of your body and its regular processes will make you a lot wiser in the long and short-term. Early discovery is one of the most crucial points for any disease or condition, so it is best to self-examine yourself on a regular basis (monthly is the norm). If you encounter anything unusual, get to a physician." You may be surprised how much you have to learn about the ways your body works.
If you notice anything, always follow through. Doctors and other healthcare providers are there to help, and they often don't know what they're helping with unless you bring it up first. Learning what to talk to your doctor about is crucial for taking care of yourself. But you have to get to know your body first.
These are six at-home self-exams you should be doing on yourself, according to experts.