What is a DOT Physical Exam?

When aiming to become a truck or bus driver, you’ll have to know plenty of things,  but did you know you’re required to take a Department of Transportation (DOT) physical exam?  Find out what a DOT Physical Exam is, how it’s done, and why it’s important for your career goals.

A DOT physical is necessary to ensure that the people who drive commercial motor vehicles are emotionally, physically, and mentally fit. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) aims to protect both the driver and the public. Requiring DOT exams allows the FMCSA to ensure that unfitted drivers are not allowed to drive commercial motor vehicles.

You MUST take this exam if you:

  • Drive a vehicle designed to carry more than eight people commercially.
  • Drive a vehicle on the interstate with a gross combination weight rating of over 10,000 pounds.
  • Transport hazardous materials which require their vehicles to show a hazmat placard.

If none of this applies to you, there is no need for you to take a DOT physical. But if you are required to get a DOT exam, all you have to do are some physical exams. For example, you will have to have a urinalysis so the doctor can check for your sugar and proteins levels, besides asking for a blood exam.

You will have to tell the doctor details of your medical history, including if you had surgery, if you take any medicine, if you have any medical problems, if you ever failed a drug test, if you have any symptoms at the moment, etc.

After asking you these questions, the doctor will do some essential exams to see your blood pressure, vision, weight, height, mouth, heart, hearing, nervous system, circulatory system, and more. It is a complete physical exam, but it must be performed by a certified DOT examiner.

People that periodically stop breathing while sleeping must communicate that. A sleep apnea test will be required if you have symptoms of obstructive sleep apnea, which are daytime sleepiness, heavy snoring, dry mouth or sore once you wake up, not breathing properly while sleeping, and morning headaches.

Once the testing is complete and you pass, you will receive a medical certificate to drive a commercial vehicle for two years. If everything goes smoothly with your tests, you won’t need to do anything else until it’s time to renew your certificate. However, if you have medical conditions, such as very high blood pressure for example, you will be asked to get physicals every three months while you’re receiving treatment.

Not every healthcare professional is certified by the FMCSA to do a DOT physical, and you must search for those who are. An experienced certified medical examiner is Dr. Arman Ghods. Besides being certified by the FMCSA, Dr. Ghods is also an accredited physiotherapist and has certification in Post Isometric Relaxation, NLP, soft tissue mobilization, and chiropractic techniques for patient wellness.

Dr. Arman Ghods‘ website is very user-friendly and easy to use to schedule a DOT physical. Schedule yours with a professional, polite, and responsible doctor so you can begin your trucking career today.

Categories : DOT Exam

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