You’ve booked your appointment. You know what you want to discuss – but when the time came, everything you wanted to discuss has slipped your mind. You’re not alone!
Don’t fret, though. There are things you can do to make your visit more effective and get the most out of your time with the doctor.
We know some doctors can often run late (some more than others!) but this can be amplified by patients being late for their allocated appointment. Arriving too early may also create congestion in our waiting room, so please arrive as close to your appointment time as possible.
If possible, come alone
If the appointment isn’t for the kids, try and leave the kids with someone during the consultation. Fewer distractions means you can be fully focused and engaged during the consultation
It’s best to deal with one issue per appointment
Please don’t come in with a list of multiple issues that all need sorting today. It is unrealistic to expect to deal with so many issues at one time and the doctor will be forced to address each one superficially, rather than giving it the time it deserves.
Pick the most pressing problem and try working through that, rather than leaping between troubles and not addressing any of them properly. It’s also not fair on your fellow patients, who will inevitably end up waiting longer.
If you do have lots of problems to discuss, speak with the receptionist and try to book a double appointment.
Make sure you have your facts together as much as possible
When asked when your symptoms started, it’s best to try to be as specific as possible. If possible, try to talk about durations in terms of hours, days, months or years.
Take notes so you don’t forget anything that might be important.
Don’t be embarrassed
Your doctor will not be shocked by anything you tell them. You can speak openly and honestly with all of our staff.
Get the important issues out first
If there is something you are really worried about – for example, a breast lump or crushing chest pain – mention it first. Loads of people talk about something relatively minor to start with as a kind of ‘warm-up’.
Remember to be patient and kind
Our doctors are trying their best to help you. If you can muster up a smile or a thank you, it will make their day.