Many people dread going to the doctor, but for older adults, it can be an overwhelming experience. This week was certainly a testament to that! Our Geriatric Care Managers had several requests to take clients to medical appointments over the last few days.
Typically an older adult sees their doctor every 3 months, and so many things happen during that time, that it becomes challenging to remember everything. Our clients tell us that they find it very overwhelming. They feel they accurately talk about their pain, and whether or not they’re sleeping. But often times more subtle details, like changes in eating, changes in cognitive abilities or driving difficulties, escape them during the appointment. But it’s these unmentioned details that the doctor needs to hear, in order to make a difference during that appointment. When we’re with a client, we’re able to fill the doctor in on all that’s going on at home.
It can be just as confusing leaving the appointment! There’s almost always a change made when an older adult goes to the doctor. A medication can be discontinued, a new medication can be added, a dosage may be changed, a test needs to be scheduled, a new diagnosis is made…you get the picture. We’re able to let the family and caregivers know what the doctor has recommended in order to insure those recommendations are carried out.
If your parents are beginning to need a little help, consider going to their medical appointments with them. And if you can’t…we will.
That’s all for now,
Lynn Breuer, CHC, LMSW