Seniors in Joliet prepare for a doctor’s visit

Visiting a doctor’s office can make a senior nervous, impatient, or even scared. He or she may have only a few minutes with the health care provider, and later the patient may remember unasked questions. And it’s hard to remember what was said.

Before the visit, take a list of specific questions to the appointment, making sure to list the most important ones first. It’s a good idea, too, to review your health history, so you can convey it concisely to your doctor. Writing out a brief synopsis to give a new doctor can be helpful and save time.

A list of medications and dosages is essential. Make copies of this list for all doctors.

During Your Visit:

  • Tape-record the visit or bring a pencil and notebook to take notes or bring a trusted friend or relative to take notes.
  • Keep the discussion focused, making sure to cover the main questions and concerns, symptoms and how symptoms impact your life.
  • Ask for clarification if you don’t understand what you have been told or if you still have questions.
  • Ask for explanations of treatment goals and side effects.
  • Let your doctor know if you are seeing other doctors or health care providers.
  • Share information about any recent medical tests.
  • Let your doctor know how much information you want and if you have religious or cultural beliefs that affect your treatment.
  • Stand up for yourself or have a friend or family member advocate for you if your concerns are not addressed.
  • Balance assertiveness with friendliness and understanding.

Hopefully these tips will help seniors understand their diagnosis and any recommended treatments.

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