Doctor, doctor Part II

redbandaidsThe trip to the doctor isn’t fun – we determined that in Part I.  Now in part II I will suggest 3 lists to take with you to your next doctor’s visit. It’s important to be an informed patient. To get the best care from you doctor you have to be prepared and smart.

1. The Question List

The Question List is going to be the one that has every little ache and pain that you forget about once the doctor enters the room. It’s a good idea to keep an ongoing list of items between visits.  Just before you go, mark off ones that are no longer an issue and prioritize them in order of importance.

2. The Medicine List

The Medicine List should list every prescribed, over-the-counter, and vitamin/herb supplement, with dosage.  It’s is important because there are many medicines that sound the same, are close in spelling, and have a range of doses.  Even if you don’t take anything on a regular basis think back if another doctor prescribed something for a flu or cold, if you had taken pills for blood pressure but don’t need them now – things like this can give a doctor clues to your medical history. Add any allergies too.

3. The Info/Contact List

This list will have all the junk that you might need for the stack of forms you might need to fill out.  Have your insurance information ready(there are 2 or 3 numbers on the card that they might need even though they copy your card, so take your card too.). Have the names and numbers of the friends and family that you trust to be your emergency contacts. Write down medical history information like past surgeries that you’ve had, major illness that you are aware of in your family and who had/has it.

The smarter and more prepared you are the more serious your doctor will take you.  Hopefully, it will result in better care.  If you don’t feel like you are getting the care you deserve from your doctor, move on.  You already have your lists made. -pm

Other articles in this series:

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A Dash of This and A Pinch of That

I was brought up to be a label reader. Both of my parents were careful about what we ate and taught us kids to be aware of what was in food and drink. It gets easier as you learn the the lingo – who knew sugar has more names than “Diddy” ? The practice came in handy but certainly never ends. Every time I think I’ve gotten quick and slick at zoning in on what to look for and what to avoid, something gets added to the yes or no list. For example, not long ago I learned that particular condiments use Worcestershire sauce which is usually made with anchovies (a type of fish). This information is extremely valuable to anyone allergic to fish or who is a vegetarian. I’ve even found “hidden animal” in vitamins and supplements. It doesn’t stop there, bath and body products are no exceptions. Do you know what is in your pets food and treats? Basically anything with an ingredients list is up for investigation. So buyer beware! Do your homework. There is a lot of helpful lists out there that you can take a with you to the store. You will get the hang of it. Hey while you’re at it, ya might as well start learning the jargon for “going green”. -pm

Here are a few interesting sites with helpful bits. There are tons out there so don’t stop with these!

Caring Consumer
Celiac.com
Gorgeously Green

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Face It

One of the first things people notice about you is your face. Healthy skin looks good and feels great too. When the body is nourished with the proper vitamins and hydrated then your skin radiates. Keeping skin looking good doesn’t stop with a proper diet. Clean is important, too. You wouldn’t wash your car windows with the same soap that you use on the rest of the vehicle, so should you be using that same body wash on your face? Probably not. The level of surfactant (surfactant is a chemical that stabilizes mixtures of oil and water) is higher in body soaps than in facial cleansers. You don’t want to strip your face of too many natural oils. Moisturizer is also important to remember. Not only does it give your skin a smooth and youthful appearance, one with a minimum of SPF 15 will help block out dangerous UV rays that could cause cancer. Good skin care isn’t just for vain, 20 something girly girls. It’s important for gals and guys of all ages. Take care of your skin not just because it looks good, but because it feels good and is a reflection of how well you feel on the inside too. Let’s face it – that’s something that everyone likes to see!

Check out WebMD for food suggestions and healthier skin

-pm

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D Sun Rays

Do we realize how much the sun impacts our well being? Sunshine has the reputation of making everybody chipper and spry. Not only does it just lighten up the world it lightens our moods. The vitamin D levels in our blood increase when we are exposed to sun for 10-15 minutes each day. Not always easy to soak up when the clouds roll in. Fortunately many foods, like cereal, are fortified with doses of D. When there is a chance to bask in the rays we are often told to slather on the sunscreen to protect our skin. This is true. However a study in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences(Natural Solutions Magazine) it is actually in our favor to sans the sunscreen for those 15 minutes of savory sun. The vitamin D actually helps protect against lung, prostate, colon, and breast cancers. It’s nice to hear a good correlation between the sun and cancer for once. Once 15 minutes are up be sure to put on sunscreen to ward off winkles and melanoma.

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