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Help Your Doctor Help You

When your doctor asks you how you’re doing, he or she is not just being polite. Your doctor wants to know what’s going on in your life.

Going to the doctor isn’t fun, but not communicating with him or her can be a critical mistake.  That’s why it’s important to share what’s going on in your life.

Changing Jobs?

Changing jobs is usually stressful. Your doctor may want to keep a closer eye on you to check for stress, pulse and blood pressure. You may be asked if you have any muscle tension issues related to your new job or commuting demands. Again, share any relevant information with your doctor.

Moving or Remodeling?

Are you planning a move or major remodel? What about landscaping? These may involve unusual lifting and stress to back and limbs. If you haven’t been exercising consistently or taking care of yourself these can be bring added stress on your body. If you have projects coming up, talk your doctor about risks and preventive tips.

Travel?

Travel has its own risks. Depending on where you are going you may have to get shots. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention tracks outbreaks all around the world all year long, so that would also be a good place to check.

Also, taking long flights without much opportunity to stretch your legs may cause blood clots. Your nurse or doctor may suggest that you wear pressure socks to help prevent them.

Other Life Events?

Births. Deaths. Marriage. Divorce. Any major life-changing event, can create stress, and even depression or anxiety. Sleep patterns may change. Diet or exercise may change.

Some of these events are joyful, while others bring added sadness to your life. No matter the type of event, it could cause you quite a bit of stress.

There are good reasons for you to share what is going on in your life with your doctors. Many doctors are trained to ask questions about our personal lives as part of the exam. Try to be open and honest with your doctors. And even if they don’t ask, share your latest news.

And remember, your doctor is bound by privacy laws, so your information is confidential.