For many people the thought of a GP appointment fills them with dread and anxiety, the fear that they will be judged for their weight or lifestyle choices, prevents many from seeking help from a GP when they are unwell. I speak from experience. Until very recently I had never had a positive GP appointment, I always left feeling that I had wasted their time ad resources, that they never really listened to what I was saying, that they were more interested in seeing patients as quickly as possible and getting them out the door. I have previously written about GPs & Chronic Illness which you can check out here
The practice that I was registered with only had 2 GPs one was particularly good with Alex but not good with adults, and the other always focused on my weight, yes I am over weight but I suffer from a chronic illness which she always seemed to ignore. If I was discussing anything that was wrong from my MH to chronic pain her resolution was always exercise & weight loss, I was never offered any form of counselling of CBT to help me learn how to deal with the constant pain.
Because of this I decided to change to another practice which has 6 GPs (one of them has got to be good right?). I knew that there was a possibility that any other doctor might be the same as the last ones, but I had to take the chance, I felt like I was being left without any real help to deal with my illnesses.
I had my very first appointment on yesterday. The GP was running a little late, which wasn’t helping my anxiety but as soon as I was called into the office, he apologised for keeping me waiting (that was a first from a GP) I felt at ease, told the GP what was wrong and he was so nice and looked like he was really listening to me, he looked at my records and I didn’t feel rushed at all. I explained about how I have been feeling really anxious lately, he queried if I was worried about something or if I knew what could have triggered it. He gave me a few options of what we could do, which were to up my current dosage of anti-depressant, arrange counselling, or ride it out. I asked if I could get the counselling, he had no problem about referring me for this. For me this is a huge step forward and makes my first experience with this new practice a very positive one.
Now this isn’t to say that any future appointments will be as positive but I will endeavour to make sure I see the same GP. Only time will tell if this is the right practice for me, but on first impressions it is.
Have you had similar positive experiences with GPs?