Managing your loved one’s health can be an overwhelming task, but staying positive and maintaining a positive attitude is essential. Getting involved in your loved one’s health care shows support and can decrease health risks. At Franklin Park® Senior Living, we believe in providing the best health care options for seniors and would like to share some tips on how to make doctor visits more efficient and less stressful for you and the senior in your life.
Finding the Right Doctor
Finding a doctor that your loved one feels comfortable with can be challenging. Start by researching whether the doctors your loved one is interested in are conveniently located. Visiting the doctor can already be stressful, and a long drive will pile even more stress onto you and your loved one. Deciding if your loved one prefers a small community practice or a larger one can narrow down the list of doctors your loved one picks from. Remember, who your loved one’s doctor is can be more important than the size of the practice.
It’s easy to look up reviews for restaurants or other service providers on the internet, but doctor reviews are a lot more challenging to find. Try asking for recommendations from friends who live in the area. Make sure any doctor your loved one is interested in visiting accepts their medical insurance if they have any. Otherwise, check out local clinics and health centers that might have sliding-scale fees or payment plans.
Communicate Before the Appointment
Many times, people are hesitant to be completely truthful with their physician, which can cause confusion and an incorrect treatment plan. Communicate with your loved one and explain that being truthful with their doctor impacts their overall senior health positively. Emphasize how important it is to trust the doctor, and that open, truthful communications will result in more accurate treatments in their senior health.
It can be easy for something to slip your mind, so it’s possible that your loved one may not recall their entire medical history. Help the senior in your life document anything they may experience before the appointment.
Even something minor like forgetting where things are placed can be an early warning sign of a condition such as Alzheimer’s disease.
Accompany Your Loved One
A trip to the doctor can be nerve-wracking, especially for an older adult who is concerned about physical limitations or the possibility of a new health problem. Offer your support by attending the appointment with them to help keep organized and their mind at ease. Once it’s your loved one’s turn to be seen by the doctor, share any urgent senior health concerns with them, as well as the information you’ve communicated together. Sometimes, doctors use complex medical terms without realizing it; describing somewhat regular changes in health with technical words that may cause your loved one confusion.
Encourage your loved one to ask questions if they become confused or unsure. Take notes on the doctor’s judgment and instructions, or ask for the information to be printed to make sure nothing is overlooked.
Being supportive of your loved one can make a significant difference, as it can be a very emotional time for them. Appointments can become confusing and overwhelming if your loved one does not have assistance. Over time, you and your loved one will be able to attend appointments more easily with the help of these tips!
Interested in learning more about senior living services for your loved one? Contact Franklin Park® today!