Monday, September 10, 2012

At the Doctor's Office

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At the Doctor's Office

From time to time my buddies will get sick and require a visit to the doctor's office. Today, more than ever, it seems that it is important for us to be vigilant advocates for our children in order to ensure they get the care and attention they need and deserve. Our medical system is not perfect.  Often doctors are pressured for time and may not be as thorough as they could be to come to a diagnosis and a decision for treatment. If your doctor has just seen a dozen patients who were only mildly ill with routine illnesses, he or she might be more inclined to pass off your child's symptoms.  That's why it is important for parents to put together a complete picture of their child's health every time they bring their child to the doctor. Don't assume that the doctor will remember the details of seeing your child before, or will thoroughly read up on your child's past file before seeing you. If they are running behind in their appointments they may not have the time to do so, and it will be up to you to update them. Please be sure to share this information with your doctor:

- why you are there today (I'm concerned because...)

- the signs of illness that you observe (cough, sneezing, wheezing, runny nose, temperature, energy level, appetite, eye discharge, vomiting, diahrrea, etc.)

- the symptoms your child reports (sore throat, headache, sore tummy, etc.)

- how long your child has been sick, including past illnesses (a string of illnesses may be a sign of something else, there may be a connection that indicates an underlying condition)

- any medications your child has been on or is on, including home remedies

- if your child has been exposed to an illness (at daycare, school, from friends, siblings)

I hope that this information will help you to be prepared for your visit to the doctor. I would like to see every child get the care and treatment they need.

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