Day 20: Make a List for Your Next Doctor Appointment
Write Down and Prioritize Your Concerns
Jot down ahead of time what you want to discuss and/or accomplish on your visit.
- Do you need to get a flu shot?
- Have you been experiencing recurring symptoms such as pain in a certain area or headaches on a regular basis?
- Are you concerned about how a treatment or medication is affecting your daily life?
Plan to discuss these items at the beginning of your visit instead of waiting until the end of your appointment.
Take Relevant Information With You
Consider putting all your prescription drugs, over-the-counter medicines, vitamins and herbal remedies in a bag and taking them with you or making a list of everything you take and the dose. You can also ask your pharmacy to print out a list of your current medications.
Bring a Family Member or a Friend
It can be helpful to bring a family member or close friend with you to your appointment. Let them know in advance the purpose of your visit and any important questions or concerns you have. That person can remind you to discuss them with your doctor and can take notes for you.
Update Your Doctor
Talk to your doctor about any changes in your health since your last visit. Be sure to mention changes in your appetite, weight, sleep or energy level. Also discuss any recent changes in medications you take or any effects they have had on you.
By having a basic plan, and with a little bit of preparation, you can make your next visit more productive and maximize the value of time spent with your doctor.
- U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, National Institute on Aging, retrieved from: https://www.nia.nih.gov/health/how-prepare-doctors-appointment
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