How to Choose the Right Doctor for 55 Plus Communities in Ocean County NJ
Health and happiness are the pillars of a successful life. It may sound cliché, but as we age, the truth of this statement becomes more and more evident. Deep down, health and happiness are very intertwined. A happy mindset can lead to less stress and therefore a healthier body. And vice versa: a healthy body can lead to less pain and less fear and therefore a happy state of mind.
55 plus communities in Ocean County NJ are lucky to live in such a beautiful environment so close to the sea, which undoubtedly leads to a sense of wellbeing. And residents at Barnegat 67 are especially blessed to live in such a wonderful community that can lead to a happy state of mind.
However, a big part of maintaining health and happiness is, of course, more technical: you must have good doctors! Having a great doctor is a good idea for any life phase, but as people age they tend to find the need for more specialists for a variety of health concerns.
But how do you find the right doctor?
Figuring out the health care system can be frustrating at times, with a lot of sifting through insurance and bureaucratic paperwork. Still, it is crucial that you find the doctors that you need, in order to maintain your quality of life. For 55 plus communities in Ocean County NJ, are a lot of resources for finding a doctor you’ll love. You can experience efficient, satisfying and even enjoyable health care!
The Right Doctor
What is the right doctor?
This answer varies dramatically for each individual person—and it should. Personalized health care should match each individual’s needs. And while expertise is irreplaceable—you need a doctor you can trust!—a big part of choosing the right doctor boils down to your personal relationship with this person.
The “right” doctor will treat you as an individual, rather than as just another diagnosis. They are treating you, not just the disease. Hopefully, your doctor will both help you to achieve a healthful state of being, and make you feel comfortable through open communication, trust, expertise, kindness, and patience.
In general, it’s safe to assume that we all want a doctor whom we can ask any question; a doctor who is receptive and understanding of our concerns; a doctor who takes her time to explain illnesses, procedures and options; and finally, a doctor who truly has our highest good in mind.
Here is a comprehensive list of ways you can go about finding the perfect doctor for you, designed especially for 55 plus communities in Ocean County, NJ:
Step 1: Figure Out What You Are Looking For
As with a quest for anything, you must first be very clear on exactly what you are seeking. There are so many different types of doctors, and you must know which kind you need for your particular concern. Of course, you’re not expected to know everything and you can always ask your primary care physician for a referral. However, we’ll cover some of the common types of doctors to give you an idea.
Primary Care Physician vs. Specialist
A primary care physician, also known as a PCP is your regular doctor whom you see for general complaints and preventative measures. You will ideally pick the right PCP and stick with them for a long time. There are many benefits to consistent care with the same PCP. Being with the same PCP for a long time gives them the advantage of truly knowing your health history. A doctor that knows your health over the years can give you the best care based on your personal history. Also, going to the same PCP has the added benefit of a long term relationship built on trust, comfortable communication and friendliness.
A specialist, on the other hand, is a doctor who specializes in a very specific disease or ailment. You will only visit a specialist for specific problems that come up. Your primary care physician can usually refer you to a specialist when the need arises. The most common specialists sought out by 55 plus communities in Ocean County NJ include the following (definitions in quotations from the Oxford dictionary):
Cardiologists = “A doctor who specializes in the study or treatment of heart diseases and heart abnormalities.”
Endocrinologists = “A medical practitioner qualified to diagnose and treat disorders of the endocrine glands and hormones.” If you are suffering from diabetes, this is a good specialist to keep on your radar.
Internists = “A specialist in internal medicine.” This is a broad definition of doctors who may have subspecialties in any internal organ, whether it be kidneys, liver, heart, or even blood disorders or immune system responses like allergies. They often focus on non-surgical treatments.
Psychiatrists = “A medical practitioner specializing in the diagnosis and treatment of mental illness.” As mentioned earlier, mental health is critically important for a sense of overall wellbeing.
Oncologists = “A medical practitioner qualified to diagnose and treat tumors.” Oncologists can help diagnose various types of cancer and help create an action plan. Some oncologists specialize in radiation treatments, while others specialize in medications.
Audiologists = Doctors that specialize in treating anything associated with the ears, including hearing loss. Hearing loss is a very common chronic condition amongst 55 plus communities.
Pulmonologist = A specific subset of internal medicine that focuses on the lungs.
Physical Therapists = A practitioner who specializes in “the treatment of disease, injury, or deformity by physical methods such as massage, heat treatment, and exercise rather than by drugs or surgery.” Physical therapists can greatly help reduce pain, increase mobility and enhance overall comfort within physical bodies.
Once you know what type of doctor you want, spend a few minutes thinking about what attributes make a doctor feel “right” for you. Is it a friendly staff? A short wait in the waiting room? A doctor with credentials from a high ranking medical school? Hold onto these thoughts, as they will be useful later on in the process.
Step 2: Community Outreach
Once you have established what type of doctor you are seeking, talk with your trusted friends and family to scout out any recommendations. Ask around your community at Barnegat 67. Hearing first hand about great experiences with specific doctors is invaluable. Keep a written list of recommended doctors.
Step 3: Insurance Coverage
In order to keep expenses to a minimum, it is very wise to seek out a doctor within your insurance company’s coverage plan. A phone call is often the most direct way to get a list of your options. You can now refer to your list from Step 2, and see if any of the word-of-mouth recommendations match what is covered by your health insurance.
Step 4: Online Research
Now, between the list from your insurance company and the list from friends and families, you can use a multitude of online review sites that rate doctors and also give important information on their credentials. You want to be wary of any malpractice lawsuits associated with a doctor, and you want to feel confident in their training and expertise.
Step 5: In-Person Interview
Hopefully by now you can narrow your search down to at least one good doctor to schedule a preliminary appointment with. This step is where you will truly discover if the doctor is the right fit for you. Take note of how you are treated by the staff via the phone and also in the waiting room. How long do you have to wait to be seen? Once called back to an exam room, how long does the doctor spend with you? How are their listening skills? Did they explain things to you patiently?
It is wise to come prepared to the doctor appointment with a pad of paper and a pen. Take time before the appointment to write down all of your questions. While you are at the appointment, write down what the doctor says. Do not rely solely on memory.
Recall your thoughts from Step 1 about what top attributes are most important to your personal definition of the “right” doctor.
Step 6: Family Support
Feel free to bring a trusted family member to the doctor appointment with you. This way, you can have an extra opinion on how the appointment went. Also, your family member can help you to articulate important questions and to process the information the doctor is telling you. After the appointment, discuss how it went with someone you trust, or the person you brought. Talking it out will help you to decide if it’s a good fit.
Step 7: Continued Care
If you were pleased with how the appointment went, that is a great start! Make sure the doctor and their staff are good at follow up communication. Are they available to take any questions you may have post-appointment?
If you were not pleased with the appointment, do not feel discouraged. Refer back to your list of doctors and make as many appointments as needed until you find the right fit. Remember though, sometimes first impressions change as you get to know someone better.
The legwork that goes into finding the right doctor is well worth the results. If your appointments are pleasant and you have trust in the doctor, you will likely have better results with your health.
The need for skilled and attentive doctors is essential for 55 plus communities. In Ocean County NJ you can find the right doctor by following the steps outlined above. Your health and happiness are worth finding a great doctor!