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Making the Most of Every Doctor’s Appointment This Year

January 21, 2022 Lindsay Paramore

The New Year’s Eve countdown brings with it the hope and promise of a happier, healthier year for all. If paying attention to your health is among your resolutions, it’s essential to keep up with your annual checkups. The relationship you have with your doctor is critical to your health. When you take an active role in your healthcare, you’re setting yourself up for success in achieving your goals. Below, Pegalis Law Group, LLC offers helpful tips for making the most of every doctor’s appointment in 2022 and beyond.

A Few Words of Advice for Booking Appointments

If you’re seeing a new doctor this year, ensure they have access to your medical records and family medical history. Make sure they accept your medical insurance, so you don’t have to pay hefty fees out of pocket. When making appointments, let your doctor’s receptionist know if you have any specific health concerns in advance, so they know how much time to allow for your appointment. If something’s been bothering you, keep track of the symptoms you’re experiencing, when they began, and anything that seems to trigger them. This will allow you to have more meaningful conversations with your doctor.

Be Open and Honest With Your Healthcare Provider

It’s important to be open and honest with your healthcare provider and not just tell them whatever you think they want to hear during appointments. For example, if you’re not ready to quit smoking, don’t lie and say you already have. Your doctor needs to know if you haven’t been taking your medications as prescribed because of their cost or any unpleasant side effects. They might be able to switch your meds to a generic, less expensive version or prescribe something else to minimize the side effects. You shouldn’t ever feel embarrassed about voicing concerns or asking questions about your healthcare. If your doctor tends to use medical jargon when talking to you, ask for clarification in simpler terms.

Set Goals for the Year and Be Realistic About Achieving Them

Come to every doctor’s appointment with a set agenda to help steer the conversation. Prepare a list of questions and concerns you want to discuss. Be sure to set health goals for the year ahead and give yourself a realistic timeframe for achieving them. When setting your health goals, try to think about the big picture and not just your immediate healthcare needs.

Be Your Own Best Advocate – Stay Focused on Being Proactive

Stay focused on being proactive about your healthcare. During your doctor’s appointments, be sure to take notes and ask plenty of questions for anything that needs clarification. Whenever possible, try to get written or recorded materials about the health concerns you may have discussed with your doctor. If anything doesn’t make sense later, don’t be afraid to reach out to your doctor’s office for additional info or resources. If it’s difficult for you to speak up for yourself, bring someone along for support.

Finally, make sure that you know what should happen next when you leave the doctor’s office. If you need to schedule a follow-up appointment or diagnostic testing, ensure you know when. If you’ve received a new diagnosis, be sure you understand your treatment and medication options. If you need to pick up a new prescription from your pharmacy, be sure to ask about any potential side effects.

Receive Additional Tips for Leading a Healthier Lifestyle

Focused on personal injury and medical malpractice for nearly 50 years, Pegalis Law Group, LLC is a New York-based law firm. Our team is committed to creating public awareness about the importance of being proactive about healthcare concerns. Please visit our website and be sure to follow us on YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn to receive additional tips on being proactive patients.