9 Ways to Make Your Next Doctor’s Visit a Breeze
POSTED BY Jan Dils . October 11, 2016
Someone recently asked me to pick my three least favorite places in the world. I surprised them when I was able to answer them so quickly. My third least favorite place to be is in traffic, especially if I’m not able to listen to a podcast or audio book. My second least favorite place to be in the world is a theater showing an Ashley Judd film. I don’t have enough time in my day to go through why that is an issue. However, the place I like the least in the world is a doctor’s office. Full disclosure: I am so afraid of everything that can go wrong with me, that I avoid the doctor at all cost. The last time I went to see a medical professional I was prescribed a medication that caused my blood pressure to skyrocket. It was so high that you would have thought I was running a race…or watching an episode of Wheel of Fortune in which a contestant had the puzzle solved, but kept buying vowels anyway. Unfortunately for me, going to the doctor is important. I am not in great shape, and there are a lot of issues in my family that are hereditary. I know I am not alone in my apprehension for the doctor. Actually, Time magazine states that 1 in 3 people won’t see a doctor. That’s great if you’re Superman, but most of us aren’t superheroes. You especially need to see a doctor if you are pursuing a claim for social security. There’s honestly nothing we can do to avoid going to the doctor. But, what if there were ways to make the experience better? Well, there are ways to do this. In fact, here are 9 ways to make your experience better.
- Find a doctor you like. I get it, most of us can’t shop around for a new doctor like we do for a new car. But there are some things you can do to make the right choice. One of the easiest things you can do is ask around. Ask your friends or family who they treat with for their primary care. Also, you can check online for reviews too. Further, doctors who are a part of a large practice will likely have an online profile. This is a great way to do your research. See if the doctor you are interested in has similar hobbies or interests. Speaking personally, I would treat with a doctor in a heartbeat if he were a fan of the Houston Texans and liked to craft.
- Go with a friend, not with a flock. Having a friend to go with you can be very beneficial. This practice will make you feel as if you are not alone, and it is always nice to have support. Regardless if it’s your spouse, a sibling, or even a friend, it can help to go with someone. Keep your party to one to two people at the most. Don’t bring the entire family if you can avoid it. While one person can be distracting, an entire group of people can actually increase your anxiety. This is especially true if you have to bring small children with you. You may also feel less comfortable with your doctor if you’re in the presence of your children.
- Go solo. Wait, isn’t that the opposite of what I just said? Well yes, but let me explain. I am the type of person who prefers to do most things alone. I’ve been on vacation alone, I’ve been to the theater by myself, and I love eating alone. Eating alone is my favorite of all. It’s not that I am anti-social; I just like to do things by myself. I know I am not alone in this also. So, if you prefer to go by yourself, then go by yourself.
- Plan your visit. I hate to go to the doctor in the middle of the day. I prefer to either go before work or after, never in the middle of the day. The reason is my doctor’s office is about 40 minutes away from where I work. If I go in the middle of the day I have to give up nearly three hours of my workday. That does not work for me. If I have to go in the middle of the day, I will sit there thinking about all of the work that I am missing because I had to go to the doctor I didn’t want to see in the first place. Find out what is best for you. If you prefer to sleep in, don’t schedule an early appointment. If you are more relaxed in afternoon, go later in the day.
- Show up at an appropriate time. This one is pretty simple, be respectful of time. It’s smart to show up about 15 minutes early, not two hours early. Most facilities won’t adjust your appointment just because you showed up several hours early. On the opposite end of the spectrum, don’t show up late either. A doctor’s office will often cancel your appointment if you’re late and sometimes they even charge you for showing up late. A lot of offices also schedule with no breaks in the day so that they may best utilize their time.
- Find a way to distract yourself while you’re waiting. It’s rare to get in and out of the office without having to wait. So, it’s a good idea to have some distractions, especially if you are alone. Unless you’re a fan of Highlights Magazine from 2005, the doctor’s office isn’t going to have much to help you in this area. So, bring your phone with you. With this device, you can listen to music, read articles and even text people to keep your mind off what you are doing. It’s a good idea to stay off of WebMD though. That will make you insane.
- Ask Questions. I know it can be difficult to ask your doctor or medical professional questions, but it’s their job to answer them. Asking questions will help you better understand what’s going on and may make you less anxious. Don’t worry if you think your question seems silly too. Doctors are like attorneys, they’ve heard it all before. So, there aren’t a lot of things that can surprise them. Also, the question you ask could save your life.
- Call back if you need to. There is a good chance that you didn’t think of every question possible when you were at the doctor’s office. If so, you can usually call your doctor’s office with follow-up Once again, it depends on the office, but most of them are receptive to follow up questions. After all, you’re not just their patient, you’re also their customer.
- Take some time to process everything. I am guilty of leaving an appointment, jumping in my car, and racing to work. However, last time I went to the doctor, I left, slowly walked to my car, and just took a few minutes to think about everything. I found that I remembered more this way. I also called my mother to let her know what happened. This too helped me remember everything because I repeated it to her.
Yes, I still have anxiety about going to the doctor. Will these make you want to go to the doctor? No, but the tips will hopefully make you feel more at ease. Regardless if you’re pursuing a Social Security or not, you need to keep your health in check. If you need help with your claim, call us today for a free consultation. Our Toll-Free number is 1-877-526-3457. If you can’t talk now, fill out this form, and we will call you at a better time.