Help Your Doctor Give You the Best Care Possible

One of the best steps you can take toward your healthcare is to learn some basic tips for efficient use of your time with your doctor.

Create a three ring binder with tabs to separate the information. This organizes your medical information and can be extremely helpful for any emergencies. You can create tabs for the follow topics.

Your binder should include the following:

  1. Your personal health history of any prior conditions, surgeries and hospitalizations.
  2. List of medications and supplements with the doses
  3. Your doctors and their information
  4. Labs and imaging that have been done in the last year
  5. Treatment plans
  6. Lastly, an area for your concerns, questions you don’t want to forget to ask and paper to write the answers down.

Update your weight when you go to the doctor. This is especially important for children. The weight listed in the chart is used for any calculations for medications, both emergency and non-emergency related prescriptions. Too much medicine can cause unnecessary side effects and too little may not be effective. This applies for both botanical medicine, nutritional supplements and pharmaceuticals. Many over-the-counter products recommend seeking a doctor’s advice for patients under 6 years. If you do make a mistake, call your doctor.

Many prescriptions have specific instructions. Probiotics should always be taken with food. Homeopathic medicine, aromas, and flower essences should be taken away from food and water by 10 minutes. Almost all antibiotics should be taken an hour before meals. Fosamax should be followed by a full glass of water and the patient should remain sitting for 30 minutes due to the common side effects causing damage to the esophagus. Most pharmaceuticals and nutraceuticals should be taken with water only, not carbonated beverages or fruit juice. For pediatric patients, it can be helpful to use a small amount of food or juice for a dose. If you are unsure, ask your doctor if there are specific instructions for your medicine.

I want my patients to receive the best care possible. The more focused a patient is about what they are experiencing and/or where they need help, the more efficient our time is together and thus the better care.