When I was diagnosed with cancer in 2012, I made the decision that I would be diligent and deliberate in who I sought out to help me in overcoming the disease.
There’s a lot of things to consider in the process, but to start with, there’s two things I want to encourage you to consider in who you choose to allow to treat you medically…whether you are battling a serious disease, or whether you are looking for a primary care physician or natural health doctor or chiropractor for your “ongoing” normal care and treatment:
First, realize you have options…
So often, in medical appointments we tend to think that the medical professional sitting in the room with us is the only person that we should listen to. It’s important to respect the training, perspective and experience that someone would offer, but as I learned in my cancer battle, and as I’ve learned in subsequent health issues I’ve worked through, if I’m not at peace with the diagnosis and treatment plan they might be offering – there are other options. Sometimes (not always) it’s vital to seek a second, or even third opinion.
Second, be willing to engage in ongoing dialogue to get the treatment you need…
As I shared, it can be daunting to know how to explain your health needs to someone. But also see if from the health professional’s perspective. They have to start somewhere, and the more information we can give them about what we are experiencing, it will help to get to the root issue sooner. As a metaphoric example, a good friend of mine was telling me the other day about some car repairs they were having done on their vehicle. They had the issue previously, and took it to a new mechanic. As my friend gave some specific detail and symptoms of what had been happening, it actually helped the mechanic get to the root and resolve the problem quickly. I know that’s talking about cars, but the same principle applies to our health.
In taking the second point a bit further, here are some practical and (hopefully) helpful things you can consider as you pursue help with your health care. Understand these are things you may not have answers to upfront, but they are things that can educate and equip you to receive the best and most personal care and treatment that you need:
- Be sure that you can receive medical help from someone you trust. Realize that trust takes time, but if you don’t progressively trust the person/entity, it will be difficult for you to embrace whatever treatments and protocols you are given.
- Does your health care professional know and/or embrace alternative forms of treatment?
- Does your health care professional realize that your attitude and perspective are as important as the actual treatment you are given?
- If you are dealing with a specific disease or diagnosis (such as cancer, diabetes, etc) do your homework and gather information in order to help you process the best plan of treatment for you.
- Once again, if you are dealing with a significant and severe diagnosis, I can’t tell you how important it is for you to see it as a wake-up call to make changes. It’s not someone else’s responsibility to make changes – it’s yours!
- Get support to help you in your journey. Let me be specific: you’re not looking for people to just tell you what you want to hear, but you do need people (friends, family and other health-oriented individuals) to hold your hand, keep you accountable and inspire you to overcome.
This is not an exhaustive list, but it does give a thorough perspective in how you can be more actively involved in your health journey.
Allow me to give you a simple caution: Don’t be argumentative and act like a know-it-all after reading a couple health articles on the internet. I don’t believe that will produce the right results.
But do be willing to press in and press through to find the right treatment and care for your specific health need.
This approach was a game-changer for me. And I hope it will be for you as well.