As a diabetic woman, do you wish for better relationships with your doctors?
Living with diabetes is so integrated into my daily life. I want to have that important and personal relationship with my physicians.
It takes two in a relationship.
These are some thoughts I have about improving relationships with your physicians.
• Come to your appointment prepared.
I write a list of prescriptions that need refilling. I take my calendar, I think through any recent doctor appointments that I have had and make notes on issues I need to report to my endocrinologist. I record my last menstrual cycle dates or any notes about why I might be off-schedule.
• Write down questions.
I write down the pressing questions about managing some of my daily blood glucose levels. I also think about my past history and future concerns that I am not experiencing, but will be one day (menopause, osteoporosis, vision or circulations problems).
• Be prepared to admit shortcomings.
I know others fear the results of lab work and the ever-domineering scale. I am prepared to address my eating habits, my stress levels and my level of accountability in my diabetes daily management.
This is never easy for me. I find it makes my doctor know the real me. I find that if I can be open and honest about my faults, they sometimes help me to see my own value in what I am doing right.
• Be prepared for results.
Only rarely do I have a surprising result come back. If my hemoglobin A1C test is reported higher than last time, I usually know it’s coming.
I used to protest and make excuses. Now I let my endocrinologist know if my life is presently more stressful for some reason, or why I might not be taking the responsibility that I should. More often than not, once I share, my doctor acknowledges it and helps me either regain some control or simply sympathizes with me.
• Ask your doctor what they would appreciate your bringing to the next appointment.
• Ask if they prefer emails and faxing over calling in questions to the nurse.
• If you or your child is working with an endocrinologist and there is not a good fit, find another.