Visits to the doctor can be stressful, especially when someone is dealing with a chronic (long-term) health condition or a serious illness. Use these tips to help someone you care about before, during, and after a doctor’s visit.
Before the visit:
- Ask your loved one if he would like you to go with him to the visit.
- Help him make a list of questions to ask the doctor or nurse.
- Suggest that he make a folder of information to share with the doctor or nurse.
Make a list of information to share with the doctor:
- Any changes in your loved one’s health since the last visit, like a serious injury or illness
- Any recent life changes, like becoming unemployed
- A family health history
- A list of all the medicines that your loved one is taking, including over-the-counter medicines and vitamins
During the visit:
- Introduce yourself to the doctor and explain why you’re there. The doctor may ask to see your loved one in private during parts of the visit.
- Take a notepad and write down the doctor’s advice and answers to questions.
- If you don’t understand something the doctor says, ask the doctor to explain it until you do understand.
After the visit:
- Discuss the visit with your loved one and talk about what you learned. If you forget or can’t agree on what the doctor said, call the doctor’s office and ask.
- Ask your loved one if she needs help getting any medicines or supplies that the doctor recommended.
- Remind your loved one to set up any follow-up appointments with the doctor or nurse.