By: Red Hot Mamas
Published: July 13, 2011
This month, a syndicated radio program requested an interview with me about women at menopause and how they were communicating with their clinicians. The interview will air next month and I certainly will share the link with you so that you can hear the conversation. So, stay tuned.
This topic excited me as I know many women are not communicating effectively with their clinicians, and this results in them not getting their concerns addressed. Many health decisions need to be made at menopause. Frequent issues, like dealing with symptoms and other medical problems, need to be addressed. A conversation about these topics may require longer time with your clinician because it involves more detailed information to be discussed.
At menopause, women require a doctor to pay careful attention, stay focused and not act like they are on auto pilot holding a prescription pad. I strongly advocate finding a clinician you respect and can confide in. That may be a difficult feat, but it can be done. When you finally locate that clinician, take charge in the communication arena. Now how do you do that? First prepare for your office visit; write down all of your questions; listen to your clinicians responses and if you don’t understand, ask for greater clarification; if the clinician interrupts (many do), restate your point that you want addressed. And finally, at the end of the visit, summarize what was discussed. And, if you are not satisfied with your clinician, ask for a referral to another one.
In support of helping the millions of us who have shared this experience, Red Hot Mamas is pleased to announce a partnership with the TENA Conversation Couch Program. This program was created in response to research that shows for as much as women chat, nearly 85 percent of us are not effectively communicating with our doctors about sensitive health issues. Together, Red Hot Mamas and the TENA Conversation Couch will host a select number of women’s health events at local hospitals in the Northeast and Florida. At these events, we will lead discussions on health topics for midlife women including bladder health. I’m really looking forward to being a part of this important initiative! So, let’s get the ball rolling now and make a commitment to making the most of our visits with clinicians so that we can become the most informed and empowered women we can be at midlife and beyond.
Good Health to You,
Founder and President
Red Hot Mamas