Often I have so many ideas flowing in my mind I’m having as I call them “Human moments” Were I’m having problems getting ideas out and feeling less then myself. It seem like a good time to share about medical appointments in the pandemic.
It brings me pleasure to involve you in the world around us, make you feel and have thoughts about things. This week I’m lost with emotions.
When you have long term health challenges and an ongoing pandemic, connecting with doctors and specialists can be quite the ordeal. During the pandemic many people in my life have had to get medical care.
So often people wait a long time to see their doctors or specialists. Then to find out this will be a call with the new physician. Both ends don’t even know what that person looks like. Reading people over the phone can be hard. Can’t see their body language or see the expressions.
Many of us can mask so much when it is not face to face. I wonder if it is pride or fears that make us put on an emotional mask.
So if you are waiting to see or talk to a medical professional keep a log. In your log you want to note your physical and emotional symptoms. Have a place to keep notes. Mark the time and date, if you need medical words to describe your symptoms you can do an online web search.
Some of the things I go through involve problems with things I consume (food or beverages). That to me means logging about 3 days of what food I had before problems came up, then keeping an ongoing log/journal afterwards of symptoms. It is very hard to recall what you might have had 3 days before a problem. Try your best to just keep a full diet log for 1 month then add things like what the reaction was, and body functions like going poo and how it is. Might sound like a crap deal but it really helps doctors know what you are going through and how to do the best tests to help diagnose the health stuff.
Things you want to add to your notes you are sharing with a medical person is all medications (even over the counter), herbal supplements and vitamins you are taking. Any known allergies or sensitivities.
If I have a phone or video appointment I call a week ahead a time and ask if I could please email the doctor my log notes and questions. I add a summary of what I want out of the appointment. When you have a video appointment often you will be sent a link to use on a computer or video call on your cell or tablet or a web link to be on. You often will get instructions on what to do minutes before
Things that might happen if you have an in office appointment you may get a phone call the day of or before do a Covid screening questionnaire. This is where they ask about if you have Covid symptoms, if you have travelled or been in contact with anyone with Covid. Are you or have you been asked to self quarantine in the last 14 day, have you had a Covid screening test? You might need to do a written or phone app Covid screening when you get to the office and they might do a forehead temperature reading. At my general practitioners office I have to change my cloth mask to a medical grade paper mask. When I went to the bio lab, I was told that even though it was a freshly washed cloth mask, mine has a breathing vent, so they shared that it keeps me safer but allows my breaths to escape. Learn new things all the time. Please if you are given a mask wash ( I always politely ask if I could please wash with soap and water to have an allergy type reaction from hand sanitizer.) or sanitize your hands before you take that mask.
In 2021, I have been at my computer or with a notebook or printed copy of what I sent the doctor, taking note where I leave spaces for notes and answers to questions.
If you have a struggle doing this you can ask a trusted human in your bubble to be with you to take notes or have a conference call. If you choose to do that call the doctor’s office beforehand let them know that is how you would like to do that and then wait for the call.
I hope your experiences with the modified visits help you thought anything that happens with your health. Please feel free to share what you like or dislike about the way appointments have gone for you and your loved ones. Take care till the next post, when we hear Doctor Bob says to nurse Piggy..