Doctors, Clinics, and Medical Services
If you’re looking for a new doctor, dentist, hearing specialist, eye doctor, or other type of healthcare provider, keep in mind that there are many doctors who either specialize in geriatric care or cater to seniors. There are also many clinics, rehab centers and even hospital units designed specifically with the needs of seniors in mind, offering senior-friendly facilities, as well as an array of services that seniors may need.
Physicians who specialize in senior health and the prevention and treatment of diseases and disabilities associated with old age are known as geriatricians. They are usually family physicians or internal medicine specialists who are board certified in Geriatric Medicine or who have obtained the Certificate of Added Qualifications in Geriatric Medicine.
You may also want to look for a doctor who is a member of the American Geriatric Society, a not-for-profit organization of health professionals devoted to improving the health, independence and quality of life of all older people. The organization also advocates for public policies that promote improved health and healthcare for seniors.
Even if you’ve had the same doctor for a long time, if you feel like they don’t take you seriously anymore, or that you’re not getting the treatment you need, consider switching to someone who, at the very least, understands the special needs of seniors.
Here are some signs that it may be time to switch doctors:
- Your doctor dismisses your complaints due to “your age” without further investigating symptoms to get to the root cause.
- Your doctor seems to rush through your visits.
- You doctor interrupts you when you’re talking and does not take time to listen to your complaints or you feel they are talking down to you.
- Your doctor doesn’t consider your lifestyle when recommending a course of action. For example, he recommends that you swim daily, without taking into account that you have no pool, no transportation to get back and forth to a pool, or you are on a fixed budget and can’t afford a pool membership.
- Your doctor prescribes a lot of medications or procedures that seem to offer no improvement.