“A good general physician treats the disease. A great general physician treats the patient who has the disease.”
This is perhaps the most common quote pertaining to general physicians, but also one of the most true. Being a doctor is as much about the emotional and mental well being of a patient, and the nature of the general physician’s job requires the empathy of a friend and the expertise of a doctor. You will need a GP from the time you’re a child, right up through to your old age.
So given how often you will see a General Physician, here are 7 things your physician wants you to know and keep in mind everytime you visit them.
They know how to keep a secret
There are many times that patients are too embarrassed to share their ailment or the cause of it with their GP. This is understandable; it is hard to bring yourself to sharing something so personal. This is especially true for mental health. Know that you can trust a GP. They won’t judge you for your past or the cause of your ailment. Because the sooner you let your GP in on your issues, the better and faster they can help you overcome it. A good GP is a great keeper of secrets.
Say the truth
There’s an old saying – don’t ever lie to your lawyer or your doctor. The latter can be life threatening. Know that there is very little that can truly surprise GPs and they have been trained to only look at facts objectively and get to the crux of the problem. So you will need to come clean with everything, however embarrassing it may be. Whatever drug you had, even if it illegal, so prescriptions don’t interfere with what’s in you. Whatever the circumstances of your last sexual encounter, so you aren’t treated for something else. Remember, the truth in this case, will save your life.
They aren’t Googling behind your back
Ever since the internet democratised information, there are many who self diagnose and prescribe based on something they read on the internet, in the assumption that this is what the doctor would tell them too. This is simply not true. Doctors spend a good part of their adult life studying and mastering the art of the human body, to ensure that diagnosis and prognosis are as accurate as possible. You’re free to read up and educate yourself about something you think you might have. But trust them; they went through multiple degrees to treat you well.
Antibiotics aren’t always the best way forward
Many patients feel a sense of relief when a doctor prescribes them a heavy dose of antibiotics. It almost feels like a weapon against the ailment that currently plagues you. However, it is important to use the antibiotics only when it’s absolutely needed, like in the case of a viral fever. Taking antibiotics when there’s no need for them not only harms you but also increases the chances of the evolution of viruses that aren’t affected by antibiotics. So if your GP says you don’t need antibiotics, listen to them.
They know change is hard
With the advent of the digital age, there is a tremendous upswing in lifestyle diseases like diabetes and hypertension. Doctors are also affected by the same. But sometimes, a lifestyle change is perhaps more effective than medical treatment. Your ailment could be solved by eating healthy, exercising regularly and sleeping better. However, this isn’t a quick fix. It is slow and honestly, boring. Know that your GP knows this too, but it is their duty to say what’s best for you.
They usually aren’t working with drug and insurance companies
As popular as this myth might seem, most GPs truly don’t care about benefits they might get from pharmaceutical and insurance companies. Everytime a patient’s treatment isn’t covered under their insurance, they feel just as bad about it. The drug company they might refer you to is just out of habit, because it is effective and pertinent, and mostly has no benefit for the doctor whatsoever. Your health, wellbeing and recovery always comes first and you need to trust your GP with that.
They’re human too
Going through a serious physical ailment can be emotionally taxing and when your treatment isn’t going too well, it is easy to fly off the handle with your GP. It’s understandable, but know that they are human too. Every time you want to vent out at your GP, know that they’re just as distraught as you are about your failing treatment. Many of them probably even suffer from PTSD, as they have seen and experienced things that are tough to fathom. They are made up of thicker skin and they are trained to be objective. But know that they’re human too, and making them defensive or offended directly affects your treatment.
Book an appointment with a general physician near you here – https://www.askapollo.com/