Why Having a Regular GP Is Good for Your Health. You’re coming down with a cold. Your nose is runny, it hurts when you cough and you feel like you just want to disappear. When this happens, not knowing where you should go and who you should turn to can make you even more miserable than your condition. On the other hand, if you have a GP you trust and know well, you won’t have to think twice about what to do. And this is just one of the reasons a regular GP is good for you and your health. Here are several more.
One of the benefits of visiting the same doctor over an extended period of time is the trust built between them and you. Just knowing that somebody has got your best interest at heart and that they truly want to help you can relieve you of stress and anxiety once a health issue arises, no matter how serious it is. If you trust your doctor, you’ll be more likely to visit them as soon as you notice the symptoms and get treated sooner, which in some cases can be crucial for a fast recovery.
You will also be more forthcoming with disclosing any relevant information to a doctor you trust, allowing them to make better and more educated decisions regarding your treatment and give you more relevant advice and recommendations. Furthermore, the trust that your GP builds between you often extends to the whole healthcare system, meaning that you won’t hesitate seeking medical assistance when you need it.
A regular family medicine physician can actually start treating you at the earliest of age, while you’re still an infant or a toddler. This means that you can end up staying with the same doctor for decades, since they are trained to treat an extensive range of medical conditions. Doctors who follow their patients for that long often manage to build an exceptional doctor-patient relationship, but that’s not all. During the time you stay loyal to a single GP, they gather all sorts of information about your and your family’s medical history.
This is very important if there’s ever any doubt about the medical problem you’ve developed, since it helps your doctor make more accurate diagnoses and understand any changes your screenings might show them. It gives them the privilege of knowing what medicines you could react badly to or if sometimes your symptoms are those of stress and anxiety, rather than something physical.
When you get ill, it might happen that, for some reason, you are unable to go to a clinic and visit your GP. In cases like these, people will hesitate before calling a doctor and asking them to come over, mostly because they’ll worry about the bill, but also because they don’t know the doctor that will show up at their door. Australians are aware of this, so when they look for a trustworthy home doctor in Sydney, they will turn to the ones whose services are covered by Medicare or DVA.
This means that you get bulk-billed and that the doctor will visit you in the comfort of your home at little to no cost. Furthermore, you should seek doctors who are available even when your own GP’s practice is closed and who will send a thorough medical report about your condition to your regular GP in the morning.
When it comes to your annual check-up, of course you’ll turn to your regular GP. However, you should know that’s not all they do. They’ll be there throughout your pregnancy and they’ll keep track of any chronic conditions you might suffer from, such as diabetes, asthma, hypertension or heart disease. Your doctor is who you’ll turn to if you have a sinus infection or a sports injury. They can even perform some of the minor surgical procedures, like draining an abscess or suturing a wound.
Due to their knowledge of your medical history, they’ll be more than competent to advise you on nutrition, fitness and even reproductive health. They will also know exactly which specialist you should see if your injury or illness is beyond their area of expertise. This can save you the trouble of turning to the often-unreliable online sources for information, but also give you the much-needed peace of mind, knowing that your GP trusts your specialist, and that you can as well.
By choosing a GP you’ll stick with, you’re making one of the smartest choices possible with regards to your health. Having a doctor who knows you, who can help you prevent various illnesses and who will coordinate your care with other specialists can improve your long-term wellbeing and quality of life.
Guest Post by Luke Douglas