This content reflects the views of the individual blogger and is not intended to advise you about your health. Always seek advice from your doctor or other qualified healthcare professionals.
Sometimes when you have psoriasis or related issues it can be difficult to get your point across and feel that your voice is being heard. Sometimes it can be hard to articulate what is going on with your body and people might not understand what you’re trying to say.
Having limited time in a doctors or dermatologist appointment can mean it is really difficult to get your point across and feel that you’re making a connection with your doctor. You can leave appointments feeling frustrated and annoyed and like your voice hasn’t been heard.
I completely understand how this feels, there’s been many times where I’ve left an appointment and felt like there were things, I wanted to discuss but didn’t get the chance to, or maybe I didn’t get my point across in the way I had hoped meaning the outcome also wasn't what I had wanted.
Or maybe you’re trying to let friends and family know how you feel, and you just can’t find the words to get your message across in a way that they fully understand. This can be frustrating, exhausting and upsetting.
Ensuring that your voice is heard can be difficult, hopefully in this article I will give you some points that helped me and can also help you to ensure that your voice is heard.
Write notes before you go to an appointment
Often I would write notes before I went into the appointment, these would act as reminders from my last appointment to the current one. I would take notes on a regular basis, jotting down how I was feeling and what my symptoms were. This meant that when I went into the doctor’s appointment, I was able to look back and see exactly how my condition had been during that time period. It also allowed me to look back and see what had been going on so that I could better answer the doctors questions. Having these notes and being prepared gave me more courage and confidence going into my appointment.
Another thing you can do is take photographs of your psoriasis patches between appointments. This means if your skin is looking particularly good on the day of your appointment, you can show your doctor the photos from between appointments to show flare ups or particularly bad days that you’ve had. This gives visual evidence of what you’re saying and can help the doctor understand how your skin is during flares even if they can't see it in real life.
Remember, psoriasis affects everyone differently. Being able to show your doctor how the condition affects you personally will help them provide you with the treatment you need. It will also show that you take your condition very seriously and are doing everything that you can to work with them to find treatments that work for you. By doing this, and creating more of a partnership with your doctor, they will likely understand you at a deeper level and you will therefore feel more empowered and as a result will feel that your voice is being heard.
If you’re not sure about how to create a partnership with your doctor and would like some advice, you can read my blog post on tips to prepare for a doctor’s appointment here.
I know how exhausting it can be to say the same thing over and over again. Speaking about psoriasis and educating people can be exhausting but it is the best way to help people understand and also feel like your voice is being heard.
When I was first diagnosed with psoriasis, many of my family members didn’t understand the chronic fatigue that can come with psoriasis. They would get annoyed at me constantly complaining I was tired and taking naps during the day. Every time they brought it up, I would tell them that chronic fatigue was part of my psoriasis and that I wasn’t just being lazy. As annoying as it was to continue having a conversation for many months eventually, they did take on board what I was saying and were more supportive about the matter.
The more we continue to educate people about psoriasis and the effects it can have on our bodies, the more people will understand, and the stigma will be lessened as a result. Be patient and persistent and keep getting the message out there.
The one thing I really hope you take away from this article, is that there are always people who will listen to you and are listening to you even if you don't always feel it. Continue to speak about your psoriasis, love yourself and raise awareness of the condition. I hope this article has helped you in making sure your voice is being heard.
UK/IE MAT-24782 Date of preparation: April 2019
Article developed in partnership with LEO Pharma.