Tired of going to the doctor for the same problem, only to find that you do not get pain relief? Well, you can help your doctor “help you” by being prepared before you see your physician. The success of any pain treatment prescribed by a medical doctor is contingent upon the health care provider accurately treating the root cause of your pain.
Each person experiences pain differently. For example, Michelle may consider her pain “unbearable” if she twisted her ankle, while Jill considers her pain “manageable.” It’s important to provide personal experience with suffering in a concise manner so that your doctor can understand you better and prescribe a treatment plan that effectively meets your medical needs.
The best way to get the most out of your doctor visit is to create a check-list! Make sure that you are presenting information that is beneficial to your doctor so that you can be on the path to recovery. Start writing down the following questions before your first doctor visit:
- Did something happen to create the pain?
- Did you have an injury?
- Did you lift a heavy object or twist while reaching for an object?
- Did the pain slowly begin when you purchased a new bed mattress?
- Have you seen another doctor for this pain before?
- What was your diagnosis?
- What treatments did the doctor prescribe?
- Did the treatments help?
- Describe your pain?
- Sharp stabbing pain?
- Throbbing, “swollen,” inflamed tissue?
- Sensitivity to contact or touching?
- Any numbness, tingling, “pins and needles”?
- Describe the duration of your pain?
- How long have you had the pain?
- How frequently do you have the pain and how long does it last?
- What “triggers” the pain (causes a flare up) or what decreases your pain?
- Is the pain unbearable or mild? Most doctors chart a patient’s pain using a scale of 0-10
- No pain: 0 (pain-free)
- Manageable Pain: 1-3 (mild pain, barely noticeable; minor pain, annoying w/occasional twinges; Noticeable pain that is distracting, yet…you can adapt to it)
- Moderate Pain: 4-6 (Disrupts normal daily living activities)
- Severe Pain: 7-10 (Disabling; debilitating, reduces daily quality of life, cannot live independently).
- How have you reduced the pain in the past for your current condition?
- Walk it off?
- Epsom salt bath?
- Has anything changed (social or emotional) in your personal life? It is not uncommon for stressors to bring physical pain.
- Financial or job loss?
- Relationship issues?
- Child or Spouse loss?
In addition, an excellent way to assist your doctor in the diagnosis process it to keep a journal and chart any patterns to your pain (do you experience chronic pain; wake up with pain; or do you experience pain off and on throughout the day?). Have your journal prepared before your visit so that you don’t forget important information that could help your doctor “help you” begin to feel better. You will also want to write down any medications you are taking (or bring the bottles) along with the dose and frequency.
Don’t forget, bring your current medications and daily journal to your doctor visit so that the intake nurse can write the information in your chart – this will speed up the process and help your physician provide a better diagnosis.
Want to get “down to the bottom” of what is causing your pain and get the relief you deserve? Call Dr. Kamson today at (888) 712-0318 for a consultation, and let your healing journey begin.