Tips for talking to your health care professional
There’s nothing worse than coming out of an appointment feeling that it was too rushed. Or that you’re leaving with questions you thought were too trivial to ask. To make get the most out of your appointments, prepare a bit before you go, and it will make all the difference.
It’s an old cliché, but there really is no such thing as a silly question. Diabetes is complicated and managing it can be difficult. If you’re not sure about anything, just ask. Write down any questions you think of and bring them with you. Run through them again at the end of your appointment to make sure nothing’s been missed. You should feel comfortable asking for time to write things down during the appointment too – like results, medical terms, or things for you to follow up on at home.
Appointments can be frustratingly short for both you and your healthcare professional. By thinking about what you’d like to discuss beforehand you can be get what you need out of the appointment. Bring a checklist with you and tick off what you’ve covered as you go. Remember you can ask about any checks that are due or are not yet booked.
If you think you’d feel better having someone with you, bring them along. Sometimes that can really help if you’re the type of person who worries afterwards about what was said and if you’d understood it all.
Tell your doctor what you want to talk about at the start of the appointment. It means you won’t be wishing you’d asked something you didn’t after the conversation is finished and can get all the information you need.
If you have a lot to discuss then book a double appointment. This will give you plenty of time to talk, and you won’t feel rushed. Your healthcare professional will also have more time to help you plan.
Try to be honest. There’s no point in being vague or pretending you’re doing better at something than you are. Be clear so that you get the care you need. The more honest you are the better the advice will be. Though this can sometimes be embarrassing, it’s really important to your wellbeing. Whatever your problems are, be as descriptive as possible.