7 Questions to Ask Your Doctor
Flu season is over!
Well, it’s almost over.
God willing, over the last few months, you have managed to steer clear of doctors’ offices, but there will come a time when that nagging cough or a spring sore throat will force you to the doctor’s office.
It’s OK. You’re human!
We all get sick every so often.
Before you walk out of the doctor’s office with the prescription in hand, here are some helpful questions you should make sure your doctor answers.
These questions are meant to be non-confrontational. A good doctor loves a well-informed patient because she knows that patient will be more likely to follow the medical advice. Keep in mind; everyone would like you to be healthy. Go on and ask these questions:
1. What is the name of the condition I have?
- Don’t frustrate yourself by trying to guess what the doctor thinks you have. The doctor is right in front of you, so ask.
- Be sure to write down what the doctor says. Don’t leave the office with a diagnosis of “I have a cough.” You knew that before you went in.
- Knowing your diagnosis will help you later if you get sick with the same illness.
2. What medication are you giving me for this condition?
- Never blindly accept a medication.
- Ask what the name is and write it down.
3. What happens if I take this medicine?
- Find out exactly what the prescribed medication is supposed to do to help solve your issue. For example, does it stop your cough or numb your throat?
- What does it do specifically?
4. What happens if I don’t take this medicine?
- Find out what happens if you skip a dose.
- Find out what happens if you decide you do not want to take that medication.
5. What happens if this medication does not work?
- There is always the possibility that the medication will not work.
- Find out then and there what the next step would be if the medicine doesn’t work. That way, you will be empowered with knowledge and won’t freak out if you need a stronger dose of the medication or a different one.
6. Is there a generic form of this medication?
- Prescriptions can be incredibly expensive.
- Often, generic versions are much more affordable.
- Ask up front if the doctor can prescribe the generic form of the medication.
- If the doctor is unable to do that, make sure to find out why.
- There might be a valid reason, and you should know. You don’t want to feel victimized by the price tag.
7. What is the best way to contact you?
- What is the best way to contact the doctor in case your symptoms change or worsen?
- Some doctors prefer email, others prefer phone calls, and there are some that prefer that you come in right away. Find out while you are in front of the doctor to avoid confusion later.
Remember after leaving the doctor’s office to breathe, remain calm, and focus on taking care of yourself so you can get back to life.
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