One of the most frustrating things about all of these illnesses…besides the sometimes debilitating symptoms? Finding a doctor that will listen to you and treat you like an individual. You would think that would be easy, however, it’s not.
You need to learn how to be your own thyroid advocate .
I have been to so many doctors over the course of trying to treat my Hashimoto’s, it’s ridiculous. However, I have learned a few tricks to get the best possible care.
Interview your doctor
When you go to your first appointment, don’t be afraid to ask questions. Call the receptionist or speak to a nurse at the office before you even go in. They will most likely be able to tell you if they think the doctor might be an okay fit. (I have even called a local pharmacy to inquire about a doctor!)
Doctors do not always want to take the time to answer your questions but you are hiring them! You are in charge of your health care, be firm!
It’s not fun because we trust doctors and let’s face it, we pay them a lot of money to help us, however, that doesn’t mean they can. Research your condition, know what it means and its course of progression. Look at different treatments, therapies, medications so that you can be prepared to ask questions about what the doctor is thinking.
You can be polite and still stand your ground. You know your body, you know what your symptoms are, make them clear to your doctor. If you don’t like the treatment options, tell the doctor and tell them why.
I can’t tell you the amount of people who I hear from that their doctor will not order a FULL (including antibodies) thyroid panel. This is insane! You are going for their services, tell them what you’d like and be firm!
Don’t be afraid to fire your doctor
I am working on my fourth doctor in the past few years. It stinks but I refuse to compromise my position about my health. I know that I can feel better and there are things to do, if the doctor and I don’t agree, then it’s time to me move on.
This can be a tough one when it comes to find the right doctor that is covered by your insurance or in your price range but don’t give up. You do not need to be stuck with a doctor that is not on your team.
Don’t be afraid to say no
If your doctor is recommending something you aren’t comfortable, tell them your fears. You can say no. (It may get you kicked out of a practice, I have some stories about that!) But, I am much better off for following my gut.
You can always say you need more time to think as well. Go home, talk to your family, research but don’t be bullied to say yes when it doesn’t settle well with you.
Your body is your own, nobody is going to fight as hard for good care as you. Don’t be afraid to stand up and take charge of your care. You are worth the fight!
I know there is nothing new or earth shattering to this post, but my hope is someone who needs to hear this will read it. We are taught to blindly trust our doctors but the truth is, we need to trust our instincts about our own health. This is coming from someone who has been there and done that more times than she wants to have been there.
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