Understanding how to talk to a healthcare provider about your needs is important. Being able to let the right people know what’s going on will help to make sure you are getting the best care available. Whether you’re seeking advice, sharing concerns, or simply staying informed about your well-being, effective communication is the key.

Hormonally will cover everything from preparing for your appointment to asking the right questions. Following these steps will help you to make the most of your time with your doctor and ensure the interaction is productive, open and informative.

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To have a good conversation with your doctor, it’s important to build a relationship with them as trust is essential to shared decision making.

Your healthcare provider should take the time to get to know you. Ask yourself these questions:


  • Does my doctor know my name?
  • Has my doctor introduced themselves to me?
  • Does my doctor have knowledge of the issue I am going to be speaking to them about?
  • Do I feel comfortable enough to be open and honest with my doctor?
  • Do I feel safe and secure talking to my doctor?

Finding and choosing the right healthcare provider will help to make sure you get the right hormonal outcome that works for you. Think about why you have come to see that healthcare professional and why now. If you don’t feel comfortable talking to the doctor, consider why this might be.

Remember, it’s OK to ask to see another clinician based at your practice. Asking to switch doctors is totally normal and you won’t be hurting anyone’s feelings by asking to talk to someone else. A part of getting the right care is making sure you feel comfortable.

Before your appointment, write down all of the symptoms you are experiencing and when these symptoms started. If you have lots of symptoms, try to think about what the main issues are. Getting ready for your appointment in this way will help you to rehearse responses to questions your doctor may have. It also helps to make sure you are using the time you have with your doctor in the best possible way.

Think About

Some questions to ask yourself before your appointment may be:

  • What can I tell my doctor about my health and what I think is going on?
  • What major concerns do I have?
  • What do I want the outcome of the appointment to be?
  • Is there a treatment option I already like the sound of?

Break it Down

The appointment is a chance to ask questions. There really is no such thing as a stupid question when it comes to your health, so always ask your doctor to explain things again if they say something you don’t understand. Medical terms are only useful if you know what they mean and they help you to understand your own health. Otherwise, they’re just fancy words!

If you can, try to ask your healthcare provider to give the information to you in manageable chunks and recap things when needed – remember, your doctor has spent years at medical school learning this stuff and you have been asked to understand it in just 1 or 2 appointments!

Take Away

Your doctor may have written information like a pamphlet you can take away that can help with understanding. It’s useful to have this to go back to when you have more headspace later to take it in. If your healthcare provider doesn’t have any pamphlets, ask them to write down the key points you need to know. You can even ask them to draw diagrams if it helps you understand things better.

After your doctor has a good picture of what’s going on for you (usually toward the end of your appointment) you will need to discuss treatment options. Ask them about all the options available to you and for a clear description of the risks and benefits of each of these options. This includes talking about the possibility of doing nothing and continuing as you are.

Having a conversation in which you compare the pros and cons of each treatment choice and weigh up each decision with what matters most to you in mind is key.

Making a Choice

For example, the option that might be most appealing to you is:

  • the one with the lowest risk of certain health conditions
  • the one that will help you sleep best
  • the one that means you can get back to sports
  • the one that you only have to take monthly instead of daily.

Listen to yourself and what’s important to you and communicate this clearly to your clinician. It’s important that you feel your healthcare provider is listening to your needs and preferences and that they’re factoring this into decisions that you’ll make jointly about the next steps.

What's My Why

Some good questions to ask when deciding on treatment options are:

  • How do you feel about your health right now?
  • What are your worries for the future?
  • What are your hopes and priorities?
  • What do you need to achieve your future goals and aspirations?
  • What are you willing to sacrifice, and what are you NOT willing to sacrifice?

These questions can help it become clearer if ‘doing nothing’ is an option for you, or whether treatment to change your health situation may be what’s needed.

It’s important you don’t feel the need to rush a decision. You need to make sure that you’ve had the opportunity to consider all the possible options and what they mean for you before making a final choice about treatment. Your doctor can help guide you through what they think is the best option for you, but ultimately the decision is yours to make.

Remember that taking no action is also an active decision. You are free to change your mind at any time about a choice you’ve made too. Health is one element to consider, but it’s also important to think about your wellbeing too

The care and support you receive should be based on your needs and what matters to you most. You have every right to be involved in decisions about your health and you should be able to make those decisions together with your healthcare provider.