|NIHSeniorHealth Offers Tips on How to Talk with
How do you talk about a sensitive subject with your doctor? What
if you forget to ask an important question? What if you feel rushed
during your visit? How can you get the most out of your visit with
your health care provider? Being able to communicate openly, comfortably
and assertively with your doctor can help you make good health
decisions and stay well. But some older people shy away from this
approach and hesitate to ask questions or take the doctor’s time.
The best patient-doctor relationships are more of a partnership,
with both sides taking responsibility for good communication. To
guide older patients in speaking with their doctors, the National
Institutes of Health (NIH) offers Talking with Your Doctor, a newly
released topic on NIHSeniorHealth.gov, a Web site developed by
NIH with the needs of older people in mind. The NIHSeniorHealth.gov
Web site is a joint effort of the National Institute on Aging (NIA)
and the National Library of Medicine (NLM), which are components
of the NIH.
“Most people know that communicating with their doctor is important
to their health care, especially as they age and are more likely
to have health conditions and treatments to discuss,” says Judith
A. Salerno, M.D., NIA deputy director. “The key is to know how
to have that conversation.”
Older adults can turn to this newest feature on the NIHSeniorHealth
Web site for information on managing conversations with their doctor.
How to prepare for a doctor visit, what to ask, what information
to provide, and how to understand what the doctor says are among
the many helpful tips older adults can find on the site.
One of the fastest growing age groups using the Internet, older
Americans increasingly turn to the World Wide Web for health information.
In fact, 68 percent of wired seniors surf for health and medical
information when they go online.
based on the latest research on cognition and aging. It features
short, easy-to-read segments of information that can be accessed
in a variety of formats, including various large-print type sizes,
open-captioned videos and an audio version. The site also links
to MedlinePlus (http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/),
the National Library of Medicine’s premier, more detailed site
for consumer health information.
NIA leads the federal effort supporting and conducting research
on aging and the health and well-being of older people. NLM, the
world's largest library of the health sciences, creates and sponsors
Web-based health information resources for the public and professionals.
The National Institutes of Health (NIH) — The Nation's
Medical Research Agency — includes 27 Institutes and
Centers and is a component of the U.S. Department of Health and
Human Services. It is the primary federal agency for conducting
and supporting basic, clinical and translational medical research,
and it investigates the causes, treatments, and cures for both
common and rare diseases. For more information about NIH and
its programs, visit www.nih.gov.