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CFO - Senior Care Central, LLC

How Important are Bedside Manners?

Physicians are medical experts, for sure, but there’s more to being an excellent doctor than making the correct diagnosis time after time. How physicians treat and interact with the patients they serve is just as important as the medical treatment they provide.

In fact, you can argue that having an excellent bedside manner plays a pivotal role in ensuring that patients get the best medical care possible. Take a look at how bedside manners can cement the physician-patient relationship and improve the overall experience.

Establish Trust

Bedside manner describes how a physician or medical care provider interacts with and approaches a patient. Some doctors are notorious for not having a good bedside manner. They  might wave off patient’s concerns or act like they are in a rush whenever they see patients.

Doctors with good bedside manners take the time to get to know their patients. The doctors might ask patients about their lives and show a genuine interest in the patients’ wellbeing. Taking that extra time to connect with patients allows doctors with a good bedside manner to build trust.

Patients are more likely to open up to doctors when they feel that the doctor will listen to their concerns or take them seriously. Trusting patients are also more likely to follow the medical advice they get from doctors.

Build Compassion for Your Patients

Having a good bedside manner helps you see what life is like for your patients. When you take the time to really listen to their problems and hear what they’re telling you, you’ll be better able to empathize with them.

When a doctor has empathy or compassion for their patients, they’re better able to see their patients as living, breathing humans. That’s why compassion matters for doctors. It humanizes the medical experience. It lets doctors share in some of the patient’s suffering, for sure. But it also gives doctors a chance to genuinely rejoice and feel relieved when patients do well.

Improve Patient Outcomes

Better bedside manners often leads to better patient outcomes, for several reasons. When doctors demonstrate compassion to patients, patients are more likely to share their concerns. A doctor who has a clearer picture of what’s going on with a patient can make a more accurate diagnosis.

Patients who trust their doctors are more likely to follow through on any treatment plans created. They’re more likely to take prescribed medications and to return for follow-up care.

Boost Your Career

Developing an excellent bedside manner can do wonders for a doctor’s career. When a physician treats their patients with compassion and shows genuine care and interest in their patients, they become the in-demand doctor.

Being in-demand leads to more patients and can also help you move up the career ladder, advancing to more challenging and fulfilling roles.

How to Improve Your Bedside Manner

More and more medical schools are focusing on training students to develop their bedside manner, along with medical skills. That’s a great thing. But if your school didn’t focus on bedside manner or your patients have noted that yours is lacking, all isn’t lost.

Taking a few simple steps can help you get a better bedside manner and improve your patient rapport.

 

  • Always introduce yourself. At the start of every encounter, take a few minutes to introduce yourself by telling the patient your name and what your role is in their care. Also, ask their name or how they like to be called. If other members of the care team will work with the patient, too, inform the patient of that, so that they know what’s going on.
  • Pay attention to body language. Look at the patient and how they’re sitting or lying down. Do they have their arms crossed or are they refusing to look at you? Do they seem nervous or scared? Take a few minutes to check in with them based on what you observe.
  • Keep things simple. Whenever possible, use the simplest terms to describe things to your patients or when asking questions. Ask them if pain moves, rather than radiates, for example. If you have to use a jargon-y term, take the time to explain what it means. Check in with your patient throughout the encounter to make sure they understand you.
  • Listen and repeat. Try repeating what your patients tell you. Doing so verifies that you have the details correct and shows the patient you’re listening. It also gives them the chance to correct any mistakes.

Your success as a physician, and your patients’ success, depends on the strength of your bedside manner. Practicing being compassionate and really seeing and listening to your patients can take you far in your medical career.

By |2022-05-31T09:39:31-05:00May 31st, 2022|Dr. Mauk's Boomer Blog, News Posts|Comments Off on How Important are Bedside Manners?

5 Common Causes Of Eye Pain And Their Solutions For Older Adults

Eye pain is an inevitable part of the aging process. Your eyes will grow old along with you and there’s no stopping that.

The good news is that some of the common causes of eye pain can be corrected with do-it-yourself remedies, or with a visit to your eye doctor. Whether you want to relieve eye strain or say goodbye to blurry vision, we’ve put together the common causes of eye pain among older people, from the unalarming to the urgent, as well as how you can correct them today.

#1 Dry Eyes

As you get older, your glands won’t be able to produce enough tears to lubricate your eyeballs. As a result, you’ll feel symptoms of dry eye or keratoconjunctivitis sicca, an uncomfortable condition that causes your eyes to feel as if they’re on fire. Dry eyes can also lead to watery eyes (the dryness will “trigger” the overproduction of tears), which in turn can be the cause of blurry vision.

Consider treatment options such as eye drops to provide temporary relief from eye pain. Your doctor may also recommend the use of a humidifier at home. However, if you’re still suffering from dry eyes, it would be a good idea to go to your doctor to determine if you need eye surgery.

#2 Diabetic Retinopathy

Diabetic retinopathy (DR) is the number one cause of blindness among adults. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), over 4.2 million American adults have DR. This condition is typically found in people with diabetes, and it can occur when the retina is damaged and grows where it shouldn’t be. Some of the symptoms of DR include eye pain, partial loss of vision, and the appearance of “floaters”.

Unfortunately, there is no cure for DR, but adults with diabetes can prevent permanent vision loss via laser treatment. However, the best way to prevent DR is to prevent diabetes. To do that, look into biohacking wellness, a do-it-yourself strategy that aims to boost your general well-being through lifestyle changes. You can also lower the risk of diabetes by working out regularly.

#3 Eyelid Problems

It’s possible for the cause of eye pain to not be the eye itself, but the skin that surrounds it. Certain skin conditions such as ocular rosacea can cause dry eyes and eye pain. The cause of this chronic skin condition is unknown, but it is believed that an overactive immune system may be the culprit. When you have ocular rosacea, the glands that line your eyelids will get blocked, and this will stop them from making tears they need to keep your eyes well-lubricated. As a result, your eyes will dry up and you will suffer from redness, swollen eyelids, and eye infections.

There is no cure for this condition, but you can practice proper eye care such as regularly washing your eyes with warm water. If you’re prone to flare-ups, stay away from spicy food that can trigger the symptoms of ocular rosacea.

#4 Glaucoma

Glaucoma is generally painless — that’s why it’s known as the “sneak thief of sight”. However, there is a type of glaucoma that can cause the worst pain you’ve ever experienced: acute angle-closure glaucoma or AACG. This can occur when there is too much pressure on the eyes.

This glaucoma is considered a medical emergency. In the event that you suddenly experience sharp eye pain accompanied by blurred vision, you have to see your doctor immediately. If left untreated, AACG can be the cause of blindness — in fact, over 3.3 million Americans over the age of 40 have suffered from vision loss due to this condition.

That’s why it is critical to get your eyes checked regularly. In this way, your doctor can detect the early signs of AACG and lower the risk of a glaucoma attack. In some cases, your doctor may recommend laser treatment to reduce the pressure inside your eyes.

#5 Eye Strain

Eye strain is a common cause of eye pain among adults. When your eyes are “overworked”, they will likely feel tired, and in some cases, they can even sting. Although dryness is one of the culprits of eye strain, there’s a good chance that your eyes are hurting due to the excessive use of devices such as your computer, smartphone, and more.

Remember that as you age, your body will lose the ability to generate enough tears to lubricate your eyes. So don’t be surprised if you can no longer stare at the screen for too long!

Fortunately, there is a simple solution to eye strain — all you’ve got to do is blink a lot. Follow the 20-20-20 rule where you have to look away from the screen every 20 minutes, and for 20 seconds, focus on something 20 feet away.

As an alternative, you can use over-the-counter eye drops for temporary eye strain relief, but be sure they’re preservative-free. Certain preservatives such as benzalkonium chloride (BAK) and sodium perborate (SP) can irritate your eyes even more.

Final Thoughts

As you can see (pun intended), you can often find relief from the common causes of eye pain on your own. However, although certain conditions can go away on their own, others are actually signs of something more serious. What you thought were harmless floaters may be symptoms of a condition that can cause permanent blindness.

 To keep seeing clearly for years, schedule an appointment with your eye doctor today. In this way, they can pinpoint any signs of serious eye conditions or prescribe you over-the-counter medication to treat your eye pain at home.

By |2022-05-26T09:35:51-05:00May 26th, 2022|Dr. Mauk's Boomer Blog, News Posts|Comments Off on 5 Common Causes Of Eye Pain And Their Solutions For Older Adults

The Easiest Ways Seniors Can Improve Mental And Physical Health

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As we get older, it gets harder to find ways to improve mood and mental well-being as well as maintain physical health. However, many seniors find that there are simple ways to make their daily lives better so that they can remain active and vital well into retirement, and you can too. Here are a few of the best tips on how to keep your mind and body happy and healthy.

Get creative

Many seniors find after retirement that they have a creative spark that they were never able to tap into before. Painting, sewing, woodworking, and crafting are just a few of the things you might try, and being creative is wonderful for the brain. In fact, art therapy is used for recovery in many mood and mental disorders.

Devote yourself to a hobby

Finding something you truly love to do will not only engage your mind and body, it will help you stay social and give you a goal and a feeling of satisfaction. Gardening, book clubs, and church groups are just a few of the ways you can enjoy yourself while focusing on a purpose. You might also start a walking group with friends in the neighborhood or volunteer at the local library.

Exercise daily

Getting in a daily workout can help boost your mood and improve your sleep cycle, and it’s also a way to be social. Going for a walk in the park, riding a bike, or playing in the snow with the grandkids are all great ways to stay active while enjoying yourself.

Learn something new

Ever wanted to learn a new language, or become more familiar with technology? Check out a class at the local college, library, or senior center and soak up some knowledge. Learning about computers and how to navigate new technologies will help you stay in touch with family easily and give you a feeling of accomplishment.

Be a gamer

Playing word and math games can improve brain function and help you feel more alert, so check out Sudoku, jigsaw puzzles, crosswords, and other smart games to keep your mind in peak shape.

Improving your mental and physical health doesn’t have to be overwhelming or difficult. Implementing simple ideas can help you stay active and healthy for years to come.

By |2022-05-12T11:06:21-05:00May 24th, 2022|Dr. Mauk's Boomer Blog, News Posts|Comments Off on The Easiest Ways Seniors Can Improve Mental And Physical Health