Health Tips for a Wise Health Consumer
February is Wise
Health Consumer month. What does that mean, exactly? Wise health consumers take
responsibility for their health and work openly and honestly with their doctors.
They find out as much as possible about any health condition they have, and they
ask questions about it.
We’ve included some
tips here that can help you to maximize the time you spend with your doctor and
make you feel like an active participant in your own healthcare.
about why you want your appointment
When you call to make
a doctor’s appointment, make sure you tell the receptionist your reasons for the
visit. That allows the doctor to schedule the appropriate amount of time for
you. You’ll feel better about not being rushed, and your doctor will appreciate
Be honest about
If you wonder why our
doctor prescribed a certain medicine (or why the doctor didn’t prescribe any
medicine), or why your doctor has recommended a specific diet or exercise, ask
why. It’s extremely important for you to ask questions until you understand what
you need to know about your treatment. The more you understand about your
condition and your medications, the better prepared you will be to take of
yourself and recover.
questions between appointments
Have you ever been on
your way home from a doctor’s appointment and realized you forgot to ask an
important question? To keep that from happening, it’s helpful to write down your
questions as you think of them. Keep a running list, and take the list with you
to your next appointment.
Keep a simple
Especially if you or
someone you take care of makes frequent visits to the doctor, it may help to
keep a simple journal. This can help you to keep track of things like when
appointments took place, what medications were prescribed and when, any side
effects from medications, etc. This kind of journal is invaluable if you see
different doctors, because you’re keeping your thoughts in one place.