Your doctor needs to know every bit and piece of information about you. Withholding information not only misleads your doctor but also enables them to give you the wrong prescriptions. This can worsen your symptoms and even endanger your health.
Take the case of a 43-year-old patient who went to his doctor complaining about his symptoms that include extreme fatigue, malaise, and breathlessness. This patient had been suffering these symptoms for three months.
In his first visit to the doctor, he was diagnosed with a lower respiratory tract infection. He felt better after the visit but not for long. Later in the month, his symptoms worsened, leading him to take a two-week day off from work.
He went back to his doctor complaining of increased breathlessness and fatigue, which affect his daily normal activities. Going upstairs to his room took half an hour as he could manage only two stairs at a time and need to rest to take his breath. The fatigue was so extreme he spent most of his time sleeping.
His doctor ordered a chest X-ray, which showed normal results. Discontented with what they got, his pulmonologist performed a more detailed CT scan, which revealed a severe inflammation in his lungs. His medical practitioner then questioned him for the possible trigger of the allergic reaction.
After a thorough inquiry, they believed they had found the potential trigger, duck or goose feathers. The patient admitted that before his symptoms showed, he switched to featherbedding, after which the fatigue and breathlessness started to occur. His doctor then performed a blood test, which later revealed that the patient’s body had created antibodies in response to a compound he inhaled from the feathers.
This man was then diagnosed with “feather-duvet lung,” a form of hypersensitivity pneumonitis caused by inhaling organic dust from duck or goose feathers found in duvets and pillows. The patient’s condition greatly improved after he switched to hypoallergenic synthetic materials.
The above case showed the importance of sharing to your doctor every tiny detail you’ve been through or had done for finding the potential trigger to your symptoms and giving a proper diagnosis. Finding the right source or cause from the beginning can also decrease your suffering time and may even prevent you from taking longer days off work.
Doctors say that they rely so much on the information their patients give them. Incomplete information may lead to a different diagnosis. Doctors also say that some patients withhold important details for fear of judgment or self-prescriptions.
Nonetheless, all your doctor wants is your health and wellbeing. If you need to spill everything on the table to get back your health, then do it. To avoid being overwhelmed when visiting your doctor, you need to do the following things before the visit.
At most, you will spend 15 minutes with your doctor. To get the most out of your time, you need to tell your doctor about your symptoms no matter how weird they might seem.
Tell them your history even if they seem unimportant and the food you eat or the activities you do. This sounds a lot but if you will make a list of all these things, there’s less chance of forgetting some tiny details.
If you’re a new patient, your doctor needs to know your health and medical history, such as the previous diagnosis if you have any, blood pressure numbers, x-ray results, vitamins, supplements, medications, and other medical records. It also pays to open up about your habits like smoking, drinking, lifestyle, hobbies, sleeping patterns, and stressors.
Talk to your doctor
As your doctor do the exam, share your symptoms even if they’re embarrassing or scary. If you’re already taking medicines, tell your doctor about the side effects you might have been feeling.
Most importantly, tell them about your allergic reaction tendencies. Some medications can trigger negative immune responses, which can be serious. Hence, you need to help your doctor find the right medication for you.
Don’t be too embarrassed to ask your doctor for clarity. Ask if your current activities aren’t harmful to you or if you need to refrain from exercising or modify it. Ask also if you need to modify your diet. Don’t be afraid to ask if you feel your condition is serious. Ask for the possible treatment and the options.
Stick to your health issues
It might feel good to be in your doctor’s office and talk to them at last, but don’t take this opportunity to talk about some other things like family issues that cause you stress. Your doctor’s time is important.
Some doctors reveal that they have encountered patients who not only talk about their symptoms but also about their children’s immunization problems. If you still have other problems, you may set another appointment with your doctor. That way, both you and your doctor are happy.
Take responsibility for your tests
If your health issue requires you to have some tests done, do the leg work and secure yourself with them. Don’t go to your doctor without the results, otherwise, your visit wouldn’t mean that much.
Get to the heart of the matter
It might be possible for you to have several health issues, but before going to the least important stuff, talk about your main concern first. Your doctor may be open to discussing your skin problems after you’ve discussed your heart risks and symptoms.
Work with your doctor as a team
Your doctor understands that you want to get well as soon as you can. However, they’re not magicians who can prescribe you the magic pill that could ease your symptoms right then and there.
Your doctor wants to make the right move one step at a time. Thus, they may require you to try one medication and ask you to return after a week to see how things are doing.
Show up in your next appointment when your doctor tells you to. Additionally, follow the dosage they prescribe.
Do all these things to heal more quickly. But if you feel you’re not contented with the results your doctor gives you, you can ask for another opinion. When it comes to your health, never settle for less.
Ensure You’re in the Best of Health
By the way, the key to preventing frequent doctor visits is keeping your body healthy. This means making yourself fit through exercise, diet, and supplements, especially when you’re approaching 40s or beyond.
Health issues start to come out as you hit your forties, which is very common. This is because your testosterone levels, by nature, start to decline as you age. And this decline is oftentimes associated with health issues like low energy levels, poor blood flow, and even erectile dysfunction.
But you can prevent this from happening by taking supplements that can help you become your vigorous and athletic self once again.