You can help make your visit to the doctor more effective for both of you. Here are some tips.
Before you go to the doctor, write down what you want her or him to address. Write it down in such a way as to leave space for you to write down the answers. When you see your doctor, have her or him answer each question to the point where you feel you understand what’s said. If necessary, repeat back to the doctor what you think s/he said to make sure you have it right.
Make sure you remind the doctor what medicines you are already taking. If you go to a specialist, make sure you especially tell her or him this information. It is helpful to have those medications written down along with the dosages so that, if necessary, the physician can make a copy for your chart.
If you are taking any vitamins or other supplements, make sure that you tell your doctor about them. Over-the-counter medications do not have the same quality and amount of control that prescription medications have. Make sure you ask your doctor whether any of these non-prescription medications might have any side effects, or might interact with your prescription medications in any way. If possible, ask this of your pharmacist as well. Go on line to reputable sites to get further information.
Lastly, if you are anxious when visiting the doctor and/or are having a serious procedure being considered, do the following: tell the doctor how you would like your information. It can be by the doctor telling you and/or giving you something to read and/or showing you pictures or films. Tell the doctor to give you the information in as many ways as you need. And, if necessary, bring someone you trust into the office for that discussion. We all get scared when something serious is involved, and we forget or don’t hear things.