viewing themselves and their patients as a team.
6. Take notes or record your visit.
Take notes to ensure that you remember what you and your doctor have discussed. Or, if your provider gives you permission, record your conversation with your phone.
7. Don’t soldier through the discomfort.
Be honest with your doctor about your pain. If the side effects of a prescribed treatment are too much to bear, let your doctor know.
RELATED: 7 Things Pregnant Black Women Can Do to Be Heard by Doctors
8. Ask questions.
Then ask some more. If you don’t understand something that your doctor is explaining, don’t hesitate to ask for clarification. Though it may feel uncomfortable, if the doctor is using words that you aren’t familiar with, say so.
9. Push back when needed.
If a proposed prescription or other action isn’t right for your lifestyle, acknowledge that and explain why. Trust that you know your body. You have a say in what’s right for you.
Each of these tips can help you to feel more prepared and confident to advocate for what you need when working with your health provider. Treat your health care visits like dinner out at a restaurant. You wouldn’t let your waiter bring you the wrong order. Don’t allow your health care provider to leave you wanting for more.
Jasmine Berry, B.A. in Journalism is a graduate of Hampton University and is soon to have her master of public health from Tulane University. She loves all things mental wellness and a good cup of tea.