10 tips to get readyTaking a few minutes to prepare for your visit to your doctor can be helpful, particularly if you are nervous or anxious for any reason. And, as appointments can be limited in time, a little preparation helps you get the most out of your consultation. Not sure where to start? These tips will point you in the right direction:
1. Have a clear goalPerhaps you feel your treatment isn’t working and you want to try something new. Or maybe you’re concerned about side effects or you’ve simply been feeling down. Whatever’s worrying you, you’ll get much more out of your appointment if you have a clear goal in mind.
2. Write down your questionsBefore your consultation, think of all the questions you want to ask and write them down. This helps ensure that you don’t forget any important questions or concerns that you might have. Don’t be afraid to ask as many questions as you need to. If you can, try to write down the reasons why you want that information too – just in case your doctor asks why it’s worrying you.
Writing down any changes, noting when flare ups occur and whether you’ve noticed anything that might make your psoriasis worse are all important pieces of information that may be useful to your doctor.
3. Read about psoriasisSimply knowing a bit about psoriasis will help you understand what your doctor’s talking about, so reading up before your appointment can make a big difference. But remember that there’s incorrect information on the web, so check what you have read with your doctor.
4. Make a list of your medicationsMake a list of any medications that you are taking, including any over-the-counter products and supplements. Your doctor is likely to ask, so it’s good to have a complete list ready.
5. Keep a symptoms diaryIt’s a good idea to write down any symptoms you have and how you have been feeling in general. Writing down any changes, noting when flare ups occur and whether you’ve noticed anything that might make your psoriasis worse are all important pieces of information that may be useful to your doctor.
6. Ask for an extended appointment if necessaryIf you have lots of questions and are worried that there won’t be enough time to discuss everything, you may inform the receptionist that you might need some extra time.
7. Ask a friend or relative to go with youIf you’re feeling nervous that you might forget what was said or need emotional support, it’s fine to bring someone with you. A close friend or relative can help remind you of anything that slips your mind.
8. Dress appropriatelyYour doctor may need to examine your psoriasis, so think about the clothes that you’ll wear to your appointment. It’s best to choose clothes that are loose and easy to slip off. Avoid long rows of buttons!
9. Rehearse your appointmentIf you feel nervous about your appointment, you can practice what you want to say in advance. This will help build your confidence. You can even role-play the appointment, asking a close friend or family member to play the role of the doctor.
10. Take a notebook and penIt’s a good idea to take a notebook and pen so you can keep a record of the doctor’s answers to your questions. There is no problem writing it down. In fact, your doctor will probably encourage it.
The way that you prepare for your appointment will depend on you and your personal situation. Hopefully some of these tips inspire you to think about how you can get ready and make the most of your doctor visits.