So yeah, we know no one likes going to the doctor, the drive, the wait, the news that we could possibly hear.. etc. What I want to talk about, is what we can do to prepare for these appointments. Having MS, things get difficult to remember when going to see your neuro for instance, asking you your symptoms, your meds... and the list goes on and on.
So here are some things that I do to make things easier...
- Get a good nights sleep, the night before your appointment!
- Keep a journal of symptoms & when I experience them
- Keep a list of medications, w/ MG and how many times I take it
- Keep side effects in a journal, of the things that I think come from taking my medications.
- To remind myself of my appointment, I have an alarm set on my computer and phone to remind me days before and hours before.
- Make sure you have eaten before you go to your appointment, just in case it takes longer than expected.
- I actually use a website to help me with keeping track of everything. It's called PatientsLikeMe.com
- Take a notepad with you to your appointment so you can write down what the doctor says, that you want to remember, but know you won't unless it's logged.
- In the journal you keep your symptoms and such in, WRITE DOWN YOUR QUESTIONS! Because we all know that we have a question we want to ask, then end up forgetting until after the appointment.
Ok, so I'm going to tell you a little bit more about the website I listed... on that website, you can track your symptoms, quality of life, medications, etc. AND when it's time for a doctors appointment they have a DOCTOR VISIT SHEET! All you have to do is print it out... there is all the information your doctor will need!
Remember, this is a doctor your going to see, so don't feel embarrassed about anything you are going through due to your MS! They have heard it before, trust me. I mean, trust me, I know it's hard to get the words out... but it's totally worth letting them know, then just ignoring the symptom and dealing with it. It was hard for me to tell my doctor... I keep peeing my pants, but hey, I'm not doing it anymore, because I talked about it! Just keep telling yourself, "Okay, I'm not the only one who is dealing with this." It helps out a lot, trust me.
Something I do, I ask for my medical records periodically. That way I can keep track of things, and have them on hand if I want to remember something, or if I need them to show to any other doctor that I go see. Plus, it's pretty neat looking at my brain at home! lol
Okay, so this is a bit of subject, but I found it very interesting... I looked up what part of the brain controls what... then I looked at my records, so I could say, okay I have a lesion there, that's why I have mood changes... Here is a link to give you more information about what part of the brain, controls certain things with your body. http://www.braintumor.org/patients-family-friends/about-brain-tumors/brain-anatomy.html
Now, I don't know if you read any of my previous blogs... (shame on you! jk)
But I'm leaving tomorrow for New Orleans to go to the American Academy of Neurology (AAN) Meeting. http://www.aan.com/go/am12
So, I have a 'separate' blog for this meeting, where I want people living with MS to ask questions on my blog... or give me feedback. The questions that are asked, I will try and get answered by doctors at the meeting! So to know more about the coverage I'm doing with MSWorld you can go to: https://conferencecenter.msworld.org/american-academy-of-neurology-2012-annual-meeting
You can view that stuff even if you aren't a member... and if you aren't a member of MSWorld, shame on you again... JK!
Anyways, I think I'm done rambling on... I kind of went from one subject to another, but hey, I have MS... give me a break already. Oh by the way, thanks for all the comments! Love getting them! And you can ask me questions also, I'm pretty much an open book for the most part!
Check out this video about MS, from the National MS Society: