Physical and Mental Health Go Hand In Hand

Everyone’s heard about wellness and recovery and how physical and mental health go hand in hand. I’ve shared NAMI Hearts & Minds materials at the monthly Learning Community meetings to help folks  learn to eat better, plan healthier meals on a budget, what foods are good and bad for you, how to keep a food journal and an exercise journal (so that your thoughts/moods can be recorded after you eat a meal), etc. So far I’ve found that with all these things combined, people are actually starting to catch on to the wellness that we’ve been talking about.

But what kinds of questions should I be asking my doctor? Those are the things that I always think of when something happens but never remember when I actually get into the doctor’s office. Below are some of my own personal suggestions and I would recommend you writing them down (whichever ones suit you the best) and keep them in your pocket at all times so that you can’t forget when you attend your medical appointments:

General Questions:

  • What is my ideal body weight supposed to be?
  • How can I learn to manage stress better?
  • How can I make regular exercise a part of my life when I’m so busy all the time?
  • Could you please explain my test results to me (blood test, screens, exams, x-rays, etc.)?
  • What would be a good “diet” for me to go on?

With regards to medical care in general:

  • What might have caused this illness?
  • What is this illness called?
  • Is this illness likely to go away on its own?
  • Is the pain likely to diminish or go away?
  • How do you want to treat this illness?
  • What are other ways to treat this illness?
  • What is the time frame for this illness?
  • Is a hospital stay necessary?
  • What lifestyle changes should I begin to make sure this doesn’t happen again?

Although this might sound like a lot, questions ARE the answer when it comes to your own well-being. People with Mental Illness are dying 25 years earlier than the general population. With even a start of preventative measures such as the ones above, we can and will make those statistics change for the better. Good luck!

In Wellness. . . .Mary Beth