Whether you’ve got a routine health check planned or you want to discuss a particular issue, visiting the doctor can be nerve-wracking. If you’re feeling anxious about an upcoming consultation, don’t let your worries prevent you from accessing medical help. Instead, take a look at these top tips to banish your anxieties now:
At the start of your appointment, tell your doctor how you’re feeling and identify what you’re feeling anxious about if you can. It’s perfectly normal to feel worried about your health and your doctor will be able to put your mind at rest about any specific concerns you have. Remember – anxiety can sometimes be a symptom in itself, so telling your doctor how you feel will assist them in making the right diagnosis and prescribing an effective treatment.
Ask for pain relief
Many patients undergo minor procedures in their doctor’s office, rather than in hospital. Generally, this is a much quicker and easier way to obtain the treatment you need. Of course, you might feel apprehensive about experiencing pain or discomfort when you’re due to have a procedure of some sort.
If so, ask your doctor whether it’s appropriate for a local anesthetic to be used. Xylocaine gel is one of the most commonly used forms of anesthetic and it’s ideal for use in a clinic or doctor’s office. Successfully numbing the area for around 20-30 minutes, you can relax once you know that your procedure will be pain-free and stress-free.
Take someone with you
If you’re feeling nervous about meeting with your doctor, ask a close friend or family member to attend the appointment with you. Providing you give permission for your doctor to discuss confidential matters with you in their presence, they can even accompany you into the consulting room. Sometimes even having someone with you in the waiting room can be a great relief, so arrange to have someone with you for moral support.
Practice relaxation techniques
When you feel anxious, your body can respond in many different ways. Some people might feel shaky, breathless, or nauseous, for example, while others may experience palpitations, weak legs, or dizziness. Fortunately, you can reduce or eliminate these symptoms by practicing relaxation techniques in advance.
Even learning how to take deep, calming breaths can be surprisingly effective at combatting anxiety. When we feel nervous, we tend to breathe more quickly, which leads to increased carbon dioxide levels. In turn, this can increase feelings of dizziness, headaches, and shortness of breath. By learning how to breathe calmly, you can stop this cycle and halt the symptoms of anxiety swiftly.
Overcoming Health Anxieties
If you suspect you’re unwell, it’s not surprising that you feel anxious about visiting your doctor. Similarly, if you struggle to cope with a clinical environment or you have a fear of needles, for example, you may dread having a procedure. However, medical professionals are committed to helping you access the treatment you need. By informing them of your anxieties, you can ensure that your doctor will take your feelings into account and take steps to make the visit as stress-free as possible.