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Family practice doctors diagnose and treat chronic and acute illnesses, provide health screenings and advice. They can help you prevent many diseases. If a condition arises that requires the help of a specialist, a family practice doctor will guide you and refer you to a specialist. Unlike other doctors, these doctors do not specialize in treating one disease or organ. They treat the whole person and every part of the body. They help people of all ages, and they help men and women. Family doctors are trained to care for chronic illnesses and conditions like asthma, diabetes, and heart disease. They offer ear, throat, and nose care and emergency medical care. They are trained to perform minor surgical procedures and they offer bone, joint, and eye care. They can take x-rays of the body, and they help women with family planning. A good family practice doctor adheres to the high standards of medical care and they are board certified. The American Board of Family Medicine requires that doctors recertify themselves every six years. In order to maintain their board certification, they must complete 150 hours of continuing education every three years. The best doctors also have the support of a medical association like the AAFP. They create caring relationships with people and their families. They are good listeners and they get to know people. They care about their patients and help them make many important decisions about their health. They care for the mental, emotional, and physical health of their patients. They know your health history and how it can affect your life. They are trained to take care of you for the rest of your life. Good family physicians are also experts when it comes to modern technologies and current treatments and they keep educating themselves.If you do not have any medical problems, you should still visit your family practice doctor periodically. This kind of doctor is trained in preventive medicine and he can help you prevent many serious problems. A doctor can help you make better choices and he will keep you healthy. You can find a family practice doctor by talking with your co-workers, friends, associates, and family members. You can also find a doctor by searching in online directories and the major search engines. Make a list of family doctors in your area and make those phone calls.Ask questions before you choose a doctor for your needs. Find out if the doctors accept your health insurance plan, what their office hours are, what hospitals they use, what their rates are, and the like. After you find the best doctor, make an appointment. Make sure you get answers to your questions when you visit the doctor. Make sure you like the location and environment. Talk with your doctor about your health care issues. Talk with your doctor about any symptoms you have, your health history, and any medicines, vitamins, or supplements you take. Remember that it will take some time before you build a good relationship with your doctor, but it is worth it.