Questions to Ask Your Doctor
In the past, our parents and grandparents had doctors that made house calls and as we know that has changed! Time is a rare commodity for doctor and patient alike. Having good communication with your doctor is critical. Appointment times vary and a high- quality visit is vital.
Coming prepared to your visit can make all the difference. Read on for some steps to make the most of your doctor’s visit.
- Set an agenda of what’s concerning you.
- Be prepared and bring along medication lists and necessary health information.
- Be honest about all aspects of your life, including lifestyle and relationships. This gives a picture of factors that may affect your health. It’s ok to question your medications. Ask questions and write down concerns prior to the appointment, starting with the most important.
- Ensure the doctor understands what you are asking, especially if they answer with something that does not fit the question or need you expressed. It’s ok to ask for a re-explanation and then repeat back what they said to ensure you correctly understand.
- Be insistent about your concerns. Remember it is a partnership between you and your doctor. If you run out of time schedule another appointment.
Here are some questions you may consider asking during your exam.
- What preventative care is right for me?
- Which internet site can I trust for good medical information?
- What condition(s) am I at risk for and should I be tested for them?
- Do I need to see a specialist?
- What do my symptoms mean? Is this normal?
- How serious is my condition and how will it affect my future?
- Are my prescriptions ok?
- Why is this medication being prescribed? Is it necessary (especially antibiotics)?
- Are my habits harmful?
- How does sleep impact my health?
- How does diet impact my health?
- How does stress impact my health?
- When should I see you again? Get tested again?
- Can we talk about end of life care?
About the Authors:
Linda Hnatow, BSN, RN, MS
Linda joined Friends Life Care in 2018 in the role of Care Coordinator. She began her career in molecular biology research before earning a degree in Nursing from West Chester University. After working in skilled nursing, she took on a role as an educator and consultant on a grant for nursing homes throughout Pennsylvania to help improve care practices of multidisciplinary teams. Linda’s focus has been on geriatric and holistic care. She enjoys helping older adults live the best life they can. In her free time, she is involved with her church, rescues cats and raises chickens.
Meagen Chicano, RN, BSN
Meagen Chicano joined Friends Life Care in 2021 and has a Bachelor’s degree in Nursing. Meagen has worked as a nurse for the past 15 years and 13 of those years has been in hospice and home care. Meagen has a passion for senior citizen advocacy and aging in place.
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