• Sophie Ward

7 Tips For Doctors Trips


We all hate the trip to the doctors.. when it seems like you are always there and are forever being dismissed and ignored the trip can be even harder. 

7 quick reminder tips;

1. Don’t be too optimistic: 

Once upon a time, I used to worship nurses and doctors and have my full faith in them. Yes, those times are long gone. I know I need medical help and advice but a lot of the time I sit in the waiting room thinking, ‘what am I going to say?’ The answer should be straight forward you are thinking, explain how you feel. I do. I am forever dismissed, looked at in utter confusion and handed a prescription of pills. The apparent answer to everything. Now I go hoping for some help but deep down knowing my own research and self healing will be the devices I am left with. 

2. Try to find humour: it’s not the most pleasant place to spend your time. Time is precious though, so try and make the best of every minute. We all want to cry when we feel awful and often feel embarrassed by our symptoms. I find it easier now to laugh them off ( laughing often trying to take the embarrassment feelings away.) Its important to get the point across and for your doctor to really understand your problems but with chronic illness you reach a point. You have no choice but to laugh.

3. Be honest: don’t hold back. You have taken all the judgements- ‘you are crazy’, ‘you are depressed’ and so on. Crazy may even be a compliment. You know how you feel, trust in your feelings and your body. Being honest allows doctors to explore every avenue. Rather than being given the bare bones and you expecting a diagnosis.

Describe symptoms in detail. We allget headaches from time to time but what kind of head pain are you getting? Throbbing, aching, dizziness etc. Be clear. Don’t allow dismissal or misdiagnosis. Who cares about the judgements. Doctors have seen it all before and it’s better to get well than save a little bit of pride.

4. Be polite; politeness is always important. The doctors may drive you up the wall but there is zero point of being abusive and not washing your mouth out. Remember words can’t be taken back. Wait until you leave to have a rant. Doctors may seem ignorant at times. They are slightly to blame for not being willing to read between the textbook lines and gain extra knowledge but they are slaves to the system. A system that is stretched to its limits. They just want to do the job they have been taught to do. If they ‘can’t’ help or find an answer they pass you on! They don’t have the time to treat you intensely and really offer the treatment we deserve. Everyone, EVERYONE has their own problems even doctors. Put yourself in their shoes and just be a bit more understanding.

I strongly believe in the phrase, ‘Be treated as you wish to be treated.’ In hospital I made many friends with the staff despite them often being judgmental of me, they enjoyed my company and in the end began seeing me for me. Not the label they had first given me. I had a choice to rebel or just follow protocol. I followed the protocol.. no backlash can ever be placed on myself. 

5. Use their negatives as your postitives: I go weekly for my bloods, weight and ECG. Every week there are red flags but they are never checked properly by a doctor or monitored. They just make me do them to save their own backs and for it to be seen that they are treating me.

My professor down south is so strict with my bloods and knows red flags are worrying. The doctors simply tell me my ATL level isn’t high enough to worry about. I guess I’d have to be in a coma for them to take notice of the high levels. They leave problems until they are deadly serious before treating them. This isn’t right. When I had chest pain I was told my heart was still beating. I use my weekly appointments to understand how my body is coping with infections, treatments and life. Use their equipment to your gain. It costs them to have an ECG machine and take bloods.. educate yourself and use your treatments wisely. 

6. Be pushy: tell your GP’s you need scans, x-ray’s etc and always get the results!! Doctors are often reluctant to send you for treatments as they are costly and as I said before a lot of the time people aren’t treated unless they are serious. This can be deadly. As people left may go on to become sicker and go on to have further problems. I know many people who have had scans and x-rays. They are told they are fine and suddenly they develop cancers and other disease when the scans had picked up problems but they weren’t deemed serious so the patients were told they were fine with no red flags. Always get second opinions! Ask specialists and consultants in the field of your concern. Don’t be fobbed off. I know you can use patient login & apps alike  now to access your medical history.

7. Book appointments in advance that work for you!

The mornings are the worst for me. My symptoms are awful and it’s a struggle. My appointment has to be in the morning however because of having bloods taken. So the earlier the better because it normally wipes me out. Booking in advance helps you prepare and you are more likely to see the doctor / nurse you would prefer to see.

We ultimately save ourselves - we are a one man team. We deal with our pain, our struggles and our conditions.

Our lives are filled with many negatives but we must make them into positives wherever possible.

S

Xoxo


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