Most people have sessions with headache clinics and specialists before settling down with the practitioner that they know is “the one”.
If you are feeling uncomfortable with your practitioner, here are the signs. These are very real issues, and it’s important you find the right person to help you.
When someone disses your condition as something “you’ll get over” and is eager to move onto the next patient, you know it’s time to find someone else. This person will tell you all you need to do is relax, go home, find a quiet spot to meditate and move on.
While this certainly can’t do you any harm, it’s not the issue. Of course, the patient is anxious because the migraines have become debilitating. A person’s career and relationships are at stake. Anyone would feel stressed finding themselves in this position.
Serious neurological condition
If that person doesn’t affirm that migraine is a serious neurological condition, move on. Once the practitioner begins to whitewash or play down your condition, you will only become frustrated and angry – and more prone to migraines.
If you find that your first meeting with the specialist takes the time it lasts to sip a cup of tea, then you know that something is amiss.
It’s like a doctor saying to a patient: “You have cancer. Sorry.” And flinging a whack of pamphlets covering the treatment of that condition at the patient.
Every patient, especially with the first consultation, must feel satisfied that the condition is being taken seriously. It is, after all, a serious condition. If he or she says it is just a headache that will pass once your stress is lessened, you have a right to feel wary.
In this first session, you should have a thorough examination and it doesn’t matter how long that lasts, even if there’s a full waiting room outside. Too often, and sadly, money is the object here and the more people seen, the more money is reaped.
If the session is conducted at breakneck speed, which leaves you frazzled, you will probably forget the things you wanted to ask. This is no good.
When you can tell that the specialist is not really listening to you (but rather has his mind on the afternoon’s golf session), get up and go. You can always tell by the expression of glazed eyes and slack mouth that nothing is really going in. It’s a case of “oh another headache patient”, and that’s it.
Forming a bond
You and your specialist must form a bond and you must be prepared to play your part as well, and that means listening intently, without prejudice, to all he says. You know if what is being said is pertinent, so if needs be, take notes.
Also, if you leave the session with unanswered questions or without having had discussions about the things you have found out online (don’t diss everything online, there’s some good stuff out there), then find someone new. This will be a person you feel will take the time to examine you properly, and one who is knowledgeable about migraine conditions.
There are migraines that certain medications will be ineffective. You also have symptoms of vertigo and derealization (a feeling of unreality or insecurity about your surroundings), which often present with migraines. If this specialist is not familiar with that, or thoroughly versed with medicinal options, go elsewhere.
The future has never looked better with migraines. There are new therapeutics and treatment options than ever before. If the specialist is not aware of these, you are seeing someone who does not have the ability to treat migraines.
The classic saying: “I’m sorry. There’s nothing more we can do” certainly does not apply here. If you hear that, get moving fast.
Never feel guilty about changing specialists. You’re paying. You call the shots. Don’t forget that.