4 Tips for a Productive Spinal Clinic Visit

If you enjoy going to the doctor, then you’re part of a select few. A medical appointment can be intimidating. You may be experiencing pain or a condition you’re not sure how to deal with, so you may be feeling more nervous or on edge than you typically would. Hospitals and clinics tend to be busy, so you may be feeling like you’re being rushed when finally getting to talk to a doctor or nurse.

Finally, when it comes to solutions, you might be bombarded with unfamiliar phrases, scary sounding treatments, and prescriptions that have too many syllables. Here’s the good news: there are steps you can take to best prepare for your visit to a spinal clinic. Following these tips, you can better communicate the reason for your visit, and help your spinal doctor prepare a plan that is best for you.

  1. Prepare Your Insurance Information
  2. If you are visiting a spinal clinic, chances are, it is your first time going there. Like any other hospital, the receptionist and practitioners will be asking questions about your insurance information, medicare details, and if your spinal injury or pain is related to any worker’s compensation or litigation. The spinal clinic may ask if you would be able to pay for any possible procedure if necessary. Many medical businesses list what to expect for payment and insurance info on their website.

  3. Take Notes a Week Beforehand
  4. Describing any type of pain – especially back pain – is a lot like describing what’s wrong with your car. You don’t know exactly what’s going on, but you can feel it. Unfortunately, neither mechanics nor doctors can get a lot out of vague feeling. If you have the time, start taking notes about when and how you are experiencing pain. If applicable, rank the intensity of the back pain as well. Doing so will help your spinal doctor localize the cause of the pain.

  5. Prepare for Certain Questions
  6. There tends to be a template of questions that spinal doctors turn to when diagnosing the cause of your back pain. Of them, the following are some of the most common: When did your back pain start? Where are you feeling it? Is the pain sharp, dull, burning, or some other sensation? How intense is it at that very moment? Does the pain stop you from going through your day to day tasks?

  7. Educate Yourself
  8. While self diagnosis may not be the best way to go, it’s still good to do some light research on why your pain may be happening before visiting the doctor. This is less to give your own input about what to do with the pain, and more so you can understand why your spinal doctor would be prescribing you something. A little bit of knowledge can help ease your mind.

Going to the doctor may never stop being a little scary, but it is necessary. Spinal doctors are experts in their field and trained to help calm your back pain. If you are experiencing back or leg pain in New Jersey, contact us at the Spine Institute to schedule an appointment!