What works for my mom might now work for you. What works for Sally may not work for you. What gives bob bad side effects might be fine for you.
I am asked so often what my mom is taking because people hope to hear some kind of medicine and then run to their doctor to have themselves or their love one put on it. It doesn't work this way. A qualified doctor is the only person that can treat and prescribe medicine and monitor how the medicine is working.
A good doctor uses his/her knowledge to make a best guess as to what is the right group of medicine(s) and then modifies from there. Sometimes it takes a couple of weeks to get a person stable. Sometimes a couple of months. Sometimes almost a year. It took my mom almost a year to have everything balanced.
Her doctor kept modifying and 'tweaking' things as I like to call it. Here's another interesting thing. There was a particular drug that my mother had adverse reactions to. Her doctor told her that no other patient had these negative reactions and this drug did very well for people. Unfortunately not for my mom. So what did my mom's doctor do? Did she argue with my mom and keep her on the drug? No. Did she believe my mom was making things up? No. She took my mom off that one drug and replaced it with something else and my mom was fine.
I am often asked why I don't know all the different kinds of medicines and the answer is simple I am not a doctor and can't prescribe them. I know some medicines and I know some that have really bad side effects but I don't make it a point to spend a lot of time researching drugs. I make it a point to spend a lot of time finding a good doctor.
- Get you the right medicine sooner rather than later. A bad doctor might not have a clue and take way longer to find the right medicine versus a good doctor
- Help you get on disability if you need to. A bad doctor won't help, could make things worse and in might work against you because he doesn't believe in disability
- Work well with your family
- Be available when you need him/her for emergencies. Some doctors are impossible to get a hold of during an emergency
- Help you get into a hospital and keep you there as long as you need be to help you get out of an episode. Some bad doctors don't believe in hospitalization, want to admit you on their schedule or when it's convenient for them, will not spend more than one minute arguing to keep you in the hospital even if you should stay longer...generally out of laziness
- Help to keep your medical costs low by getting everything approved by the insurance company and always using the lowest most effective solutions to problems. Bad doctors won't go this extra mile because in their head, it's not their money being spent.
- A good doctor has a friendly staff or assistant that is pleasant to speak to and relies messages to the doctor when need be. A bad doctor has a mean staff that feels you are bothering them when and if you ever call.
- Good doctors look out for you and check up on things. Bad doctors don't do this.
You might think this article is harsh but it's the truth. There are good doctors and bad doctors. Many people just fall into a doctor and don't actively go out and find the very best doctor they can. As a result they suffer in many ways. Don't let this happen to you.
About The Author
David Oliver is the nation's leading experts on helping and supporting a loved one with bipolar disorder. You can get learn about many of David's little known, yet effective strategies to cope and deal with your loved one's bipolar by clicking here right now. View all articles by David Oliver