Ok sisters, I have a little “what I learned the hard way” piece of advice.
I wholeheartedly believe that we must be in charge of our own health. It’s a philosophy that is relatively new, as compared with my parent’s generation, who unquestioningly trusted and listened to their doctor, and may have been discouraged from “doing their own thinking.” (Maybe this hasn’t been your family’s experience, but it seems to be a pretty good summary of those in the previous generation that I know.)
It must have been quite a comfort to think that any time something was wrong with you or a family member, all you had to do was visit your family doctor and they would take care of the problem. If this has been your experience, I’m happy for you!
My personal experience has led me to needing and therefore being open to many alternative therapies, some of which are extremely simple and safe and keep one from over using antibiotics and pharmaceuticals in general. It really appeals to me to do all I can with diet and exercise, simple supplements and doing all I can to be mentally and emotionally well as a holistic approach to managing my own health.
But there have been a few things that have been beating me up the last few years and my, shall I say maverick attitude, has cost me some time and money and not a little grief. I don’t think that I have fully understood the benefit of having a primary care doctor as a hub for whatever medical professionals you may need. Part of the problem is that I’ve been in between doctors (one who understood my modus operandi had to retire unfortunately, and one is about to retire). And it has meant that I’ve been trying to orchestrate testing and appointments on my own, with no clear referring physician to back me up.
Now that I have found a doctor who has quickly gained my confidence and who has really made some things happen for me by ordering tests and making appointments, I am amazed at how quickly things can move toward a resolution.
So here’s, my advice:
If you don’t already have a really good primary care physician, please find one. You never know when you will need someone to go to bat for you. A good primary care doctor will organize testing, make referrals and appointments for you, interface with specialists on your behalf, if need be, and just generally have your back.
I am so grateful to now have a team of doctors who are watching out for me and communicating with each other. It is a wonderful feeling to have that support.
Take good care and best wishes as you build a team to help you be as healthy as possible!