In an ideal world, when we visit the doctor, we would have infinite time to talk with them about all of our issues, questions and concerns. They’d be able to give us all the answers and solutions to our health inquiries, and we would be able to implement them immediately. The hard and fast truth is that doctors are tremendously busy people, and the nature of our current healthcare system means that they can only dedicate between 5-10 minutes to each patient visit. This is not a lot of time to cram in a lot of discussion and information.
This can be overwhelming if we aren’t prepared. Without the appropriate planning, we may forget to ask certain questions or mention key pieces of health information that might be pivotal to creating an appropriate health plan.
In order to maximize the time you have with your doctor, consider the following:
· Ask yourself: “what is my primary goal” – Is it to go in for a simple check-up? Are you looking for a diagnosis to a recent health issue? Do you need a new treatment plan? Start with a clear understanding of why you are seeing the doctor. This will help guide the rest of your preparation.
· Get your medical information together. This is especially true if you are seeing a new doctor. Prepare a detailed medical history on your own health as well as your family history.
· Prepare a list of all medications and supplements. Write down everything you take every day. This can be medications, over-the-counter pills or even vitamin/mineral supplements. Be as thorough as possible.
· Write down the questions you want to ask. This way, you won’t forget to ask the important things!
· Bring a pen and paper to your appointment. Write down what was discussed and what you learned from the appointment so you can refer to it later.
· Bring a family member or a friend. Having a second pair of ears and eyes can be helpful when recalling next steps and making changes. Inter Valley Health Plan hosts classes regularly on health and vitality. For a full list of classes in your area, please visit forhealthandliving.com/ivhpevents
Article From Inter Valley Health Plan