Medical jargon and health questions, no matter how simplified, can often be quite intimidating. During a diagnosis, it is natural to feel a little out of your depth when trying to understand what is wrong with you.
Furthermore, because you and your doctor have different perspectives on your health and lifestyle, both your priorities may be vastly different while coming up with a treatment plan. For instance, you might be worried about your lifestyle and whether or not you can pursue certain hobbies like sports.
Your doctor, on the other hand, may be more focused on a treatment plan that involves minimal physical exertion. As a result, while the goal is the same, you may differ on the method of getting there.
Treatment success is not just about how well a problem is rectified but also about how satisfied a patient is with his or her life afterwards. This is why it is important to assert your needs and ask health-related questions. Here are some questions to ask your doctor:
What outcome can I expect?
It is important to understand the outcomes of a treatment plan so that you know exactly what to expect. Here are some factors that you will need clarity on:
- The success rate of the treatment offered to you
- How long it takes for your health problem to be cured
- The lifestyle changes you must make during the treatment process
- The lifestyle changes you must make after the treatment process
- Measures you can take to prevent the health problem from recurring
- Side effects that you should know about
These factors can help you understand what will happen to your body during and after the treatment. This way, you can speak to your doctor about the changes you must make and the changes you can avoid.
What are the different treatment options?
Some doctors simply choose a treatment plan they feel is best and prescribe it to their patients, while others prefer a discussion on the different options available. The latter is always a better way to go about things as it can account for your individual needs.
For instance, if you are a mother and must pick up your kids from school every day at 2:00 pm, treatment options that include drowsiness as a side effect can be dangerous if you have to drive to the school. Similarly, treatment plans that interfere with your work schedule can also be avoided by discussing the options available.
How long can you wait to start the treatment?
Some diseases require urgent treatment to prevent them from getting worse, while others can wait a few days. For instance, if your doctor diagnoses you with appendicitis, the chances of the treatment being urgent are much higher than if you are diagnosed with stomach ulcers. Both problems are serious, but in the case of stomach ulcers, you can bargain for a day or two before starting treatment.
Of course, you must only do so if you have pressing engagements that are unavoidable. It is always best to get your health problems sorted out as quickly as possible. When you are considering questions to ask your doctor during a checkup, add this to your list!
What should you do on your own to get better?
Many are averse to taking a ton of medication. If you are one of them, some good questions to ask your doctor include questions regarding home remedies or any measures you can take on your own to get better. Furthermore, your doctor will make you cognizant of lifestyle choices that are affecting your health negatively.
Sometimes, simple measures like paying more attention to what you eat, how much you sleep and whether you exercise can mean a world of difference when it comes to your health. When it comes to minor illnesses and infections, some home remedies are known to be quite effective. Therefore, it never hurts to ask about them.
How much will the treatment cost?
One of the most important healthcare questions to ask is how much the treatment will cost you. Similarly, it is also vital to inquire whether your insurance will be accepted at the hospital you’re being treated at (and whether your insurance covers the treatment – though this is a question for your insurance provider and not your doctor).
The reason why you should add this to the list of questions to ask your doctor is because we underestimate the cost of treatment and it leads to a financial drain. Being prepared for the treatment, mentally and financially, is one of the best things that you can do for yourself.
Even if you are not sick, you must ask health questions during your routine check-ups to make sure you are not missing anything. It is important to know as much as you can about the way your body functions.
You can always find out ways to improve your health during a routine check-up as well. In addition to these questions, you can also inquire about your test results, whether you should get a second opinion, and whether you have missed anything.