To Be HEALTHY: an APPLE/Day; KEEP Yourself FARAWAY From DOCTORS, Mostly: Doctors WaitinRoom I Had Not Seen my DOCTOR For 2 Yrs, Was Healthy, But I Was Due 4 a Checkup. After, I BECAME Very Ill. TRUTH: I'm SUFFERING From Doctors-Waiting-Room BLUES! I'm SO SICK For 3 DAYS, NOW.
5 Ways Not to Get Sick at The Doctor Office
You’re probably seeing your doctor in the hope of staying healthy.
Unfortunately, even the most pristine-looking medical offices are hot
beds for germs. From the “coughers” and “sneezers” in the waiting room
to the employees (and even the doctor) who forget to wash their hands
after seeing sick patients, you’re in a high-risk environment. So what
can you do to lower your risk of falling victim to whatever virus is
passing around at your doctor’s office?
See if You Can Handle Your Problem by Phone
If you’re seeing your doctor for something simple like a prescription
refill, call the office first to see if you can handle your problem by
phone. Why sit in a waiting room full of sick people unless you have to?
Not everything requires a face-to-face visit. Luckily, telemedicine,
where you consult with a doctor online or by video, is growing in
popularity. With telemedicine, you can see a doctor in the privacy of
your home. That’s convenient, especially during flu season. (with the HealthStatus Health Pass you can get 24/7 access to a doctor by phone click here for more information)
Avoid the Waiting Room Blues
Steer clear of the waiting room. The waiting room is where most of
the viruses and bacteria cluster. People with colds and respiratory
infections waiting to be called back to see the doctor have time to flip
through magazines and transfer germs to the pages. Especially when the
doc is running behind. When you pick up a magazine, you could become the
unlucky recipient of a cold virus. Why take the chance? Bring your own
book or magazine to read and keep it in your lap, and not on the table
The same goes for anything in the waiting room. If you have a child,
bring along a toy for them to play with so they don’t have to handle
toys sick children might have played with in the waiting room.
It’s not just the toys and reading material that harbor viruses. When
patients in the waiting room cough or sneeze, viruses are expelled into
the air. Sit in the waiting room long enough and you’ll breathe some
in. Hopefully, your immune system will fight them off, but avoiding them
entirely is the best form of protection. Carry a cell phone and ask the
front desk to call you when they’re ready for you. Then wait in your
Be an Early Bird
Paranoid about germs? Grab the first appointment of the day when the
waiting room and examining room are at their cleanest. Most offices
aren’t thoroughly cleaned and sanitized until the end of the day. This
leaves lots of time for sick patients to filter in and leave behind
Bring Your Own Hand Sanitizer
Protect yourself from viruses and bacteria by carrying a bottle of
hand sanitizer with you. Look for one made with natural ingredients as
the safety of the ingredients in some hand sanitizers and anti-bacterial
soaps, particularly triclosan, are under scrutiny. Clean your hands
before stepping into your doctor’s office and again as you leave.
Make Sure Your Doc is Following the Rules
Like everyone else, doctors and nurses are in a hurry and sometimes
forget to wash their hands. Don’t be afraid to ask them to do it before
they examine you. It’s not just the hands of health care workers you
have to fear. A study showed a doctor’s stethoscope is more contaminated
with bacteria than their hands. Ask them politely to use an alcohol
wipe to clean the portion of the stethoscope that goes on your chest.
It’s not rude to do this. In fact, it’s smart.
The Bottom Line?
Just because it’s a doctor’s office doesn’t mean it’s clean. A
constant influx and efflux of patients creates an environment that’s
teeming with germs. Take a few simple steps to protect yourself.