Hack Your Health: 13 Crucial Ways to Get Better Results From Your Doctor

Hack Your Health: 13 Crucial Ways to Get Better Results From Your Doctor

How do you feel about your doctor? If you’ve ever felt uneasy or like you don’t matter to your physician, you know that sometimes it’s just not a good fit. 

But your health is literally the most important commodity you have. If you expect to get proper medical care and learn how to follow through on your doctor’s recommendations, you’ve got to have open ldv1954050ines of communication, and you need to find a doc who has the kind of “bedside manner” that works best for you. 

Of course, that’s not always as easy as it sounds.

What’s New in Primary Care Visits?

Across the board, cuts are routinely made in order to service more patients with less resources. These days, your time with your doc is precious – she’ll probably see you for 15 minutes or less, and electronic records are replacing some of the discussion that used to occur face to face.

On top of that, there may be strong emotions and embarrassment that go along with any disturbing symptoms, especially if you’re not really comfortable saying what you need to say to this person. 

As a patient, you can and should learn to talk with your doctor more effectively – especially if you want to take the best possible care of yourself (and you DO, trust me!).

With that in mind, try these suggestions for choosing a physician you’ll feel comfortable with, and with whom you can easily communicate.

How to Choose the Best Doctor for You – 4 Essential Tips

1. Check social media. Take a look at your doctor’s Twitter feed or Facebook page for a preview that may suggest their personality and approach. Many health professionals use social media to educate their patients and answer common questions.

2. Evaluate online ratings. Internet services are now rating pediatricians as well as restaurants, and the criteria usually includes being friendly and easy to talk with. Just remember that these are opinions rather than facts. You may want to consult additional sources like referrals from friends and other health care providers.

3. Focus on the team. Pay attention to how your doctor interacts with colleagues as well as you. Some studies suggest that up to 80% of serious medical errors are caused by miscommunications between caregivers.

4. Take action. Most of all look for a physician who encourages your engagement. Do they speak with you respectfully and value your input?

9 Necessary Notes on Communicating with Your Doctor

1. Set priorities. Given how short doctor visits are today, ensure you squeeze in the main issues before you leave. Focus on your back pain instead of trying to deal with a whole laundry list of experiences.

2. Volunteer information. Your doctor may be as hesitant as you to bring up sensitive subjects like losing weight or quitting smoking. Share any details that could be relevant to receiving the treatment you need.

3. Ask questions. More than 65% of medical schools now teach communications, but some practitioners still tend to speak in lectures. Asking questions creates a discussion and clarifies your concerns.

4. Sum it up. Restating what your doctor said is an effective way to show whether you really understood each other. Try giving a quick recap before you walk out the door.

5. Start a journal. Keeping a journal can help you to think straight when you’re dealing with complicated medical information and strong emotions. Write down your symptoms and any events you want to talk about.

6. Take notes. Jot down what your doctor tells you. Use a notepad or your phone. Some practitioners may even let you record the sessions.

7. Accept uncertainty. Encourage your doctor to be candid by letting them know that you can handle the truth. You may be able to avoid unnecessary tests and prescriptions that are unlikely to provide clear cut answers or significant relief.

8. Discuss risks. Most procedures have risks as well as benefits. Be polite but firm about needing to hear the full picture.

9. Bring support. If you’re nervous about going to the doctor’s office alone, take along someone you trust like your spouse or a friend. Patient advocates can also facilitate discussions between you and your doctor. Your employer may have an employee assistance program or you can contact groups like the American Cancer Society.

Skillful communications can turn you into an engaged patient who makes sound health decisions for you and your family. When you’re knowledgeable, assertive, and courteous, you help your doctor to provide you with the best quality care possible.

No Longer Just for the Rich and Famous: All About Personal Training at Home

No Longer Just for the Rich and Famous: All About Personal Training at Home

 

beautifu9Ordinarily, if your alarm app tried to wake you up at 6 a.m. on a cold January morning to get you to go to the gym, you would probably think nothing of turning it off and going back to sleep. What if it was your personal trainer at the door ringing the bell, instead?

You would have no choice but to get up. A personal trainer visiting people at home could be the best way to stay with your fitness goals.

Even 10 years ago, believing that everyday people could afford a house call by a personal trainer would have been a stretch. The personal trainer business has changed now, though. To begin, there are more trainers looking for work now than there used to be. They have had to cut their prices to stay competitive. The troubled economy has something to do with it, too.

Personal trainers don’t have a bottomless supply of well-heeled clients anymore. They need to compromise and train ordinary people to get by.
Officially, house calls cost about $100 a session. Many clients, though, manage to easily work the price down to $75.

The economy is slow and it’s a buyer’s market. The smaller fees that house calling personal trainers charge isn’t as much of a sacrifice as it might appear, though. They do get to keep it all. If they offered their services at a gym, they would split their fees with the management.”

Like everything else, home personal training has both positives and negatives.

For clients receiving personal training at home, the experience can feel like telecommuting – you need to give up the lively environment of a fully equipped place for other benefits. When you call in a home personal trainer, you no longer get access to high-tech gym equipment, saunas or group exercise sessions.

People who love their home sessions, though, feel that it’s a fair trade-off. If a house-calling personal trainer can get them to stop making excuses, the arrangement can achieve more than the best high-tech gym.

For personal trainers in this business, visiting people at home is a step down. They need to carry heavy exercise equipment to people’s homes, make do with low-tech tools and help people work out in unglamorous environments – messy homes with pets and children running about.

People try all kinds of ways to make home personal training even more affordable.

Even $50 and $75 sessions can add up very quickly. Many people are able to afford home sessions because they don’t engage their trainers for long. People often consider in home personal training as a way to get fit for a wedding, an important party, an interview or the beach. They haggle, put a package deal together and pay for it in advance. You can get a weight loss plan together at $1200 for 25 sessions. Many people can afford this price level.

It’s possible to get this kind of training for half or quarter this sum, too. You just need to rope in a couple of friends with everyone chipping in to pay for the whole package.

One needs to consider the safety angle

Many home training businesses exist to help people find trainers. They have trouble, though, when male clients insist on being sent female trainers. Usually, such requests are turned down if the male client is home alone.

 

About the Author

 

Jessica Watts is a retired high school gymnastics instructor. She likes to spend her days painting the next masterpiece and blogging about her insights online. She recommends to get a weight loss plan instead to consider in home personal training as a way to get fit.

 

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