How to Talk to Your Doctor

To ensure you get the best possible care from your doctor, it’s important that you be proactive about your health. Be sure to talk with your doctor about your current health issues, any medications that you’re currently taking (prescribed or over the counter, the specific doses, and how frequently you take them), your lifestyle (like your diet and physical activity level and whether you smoke), your personal and family medical history, and any health-related questions that you may have. When it comes to your doctor and your health, nothing is “off limits,” so don’t hold back on providing any pertinent information that you may feel embarrassed discussing—failing to disclose information to your doctor may result in serious consequences to your health.

If you have any questions for your doctor, it can be helpful to write them down ahead of time and bring them with you so that you don’t forget to discuss any of your concerns. Throughout the SecondsCount website, you’ll find several lists of questions, many specific to conditions, tests, and treatments, that you can print out and bring with you. While at your appointments, taking notes about what you discuss with your doctor can help you easily refer to this information later. In some instances, having a family member or friend accompany you to your appointments may also be helpful to have an extra set of ears and input on hand in case you forget to bring something up.

Explore the resources below that may help you be more informed and better prepared when talking to your doctor: