In the quest to find a treatment for your symptoms, you may need to consult with your family physician first. Your doctor then may refer you to a neurologist, a doctor who specializes in nervous system and brain conditions for further assessment, diagnosis and treatment.
Your appointment time may be only around 15 to 20 minutes and if there is a lot to talk about so you may need to prepare beforehand for your appointment in order to get a productive and optimal appointment time. Listed below are some tips that will help you prepare well for your appointment.
You may need to call the doctor’s office weeks before your appointment to know if there are any restrictions you need to follow before the appointment. This will allow you to follow them properly.
Acquire a diary or a journal that you can write on wherein you can list down all the symptoms you’ve been experiencing. You can also include symptoms that may seem unrelated to the condition that forced you to make an appointment in the first place.
Jot down all important information about yourself adding any changes life changes or recent major stresses you have experienced.
List down all the supplements, steroids, herbs and all over-the-counter and prescription medications you are presently taking.
Ask your friend or family member to accompany you to the appointment. He or she can help you remember the information given by your doctor that you may have missed. He or she may also help you remember some things that you may have forgotten or missed that your doctor needs to know.
Write down all the questions that you need to know to your doctor. These questions may include what treatments and tests can be good for your condition
Writing down all your questions is one of the most important things you can do to prepare well for your appointment since your appointment time can be quite limited. For questions regarding your tremor condition, some of the questions you may ask can include:
What do you think is the exact cause of my condition?
Can there be other possible causes for my condition?
What tests are necessary to come up with a correct diagnosis?
How does essential tremor develop? How does it progress?
What are the possible treatments? What do you think is the best treatment?
What treatment plan is available that can address my tremors as well as my other health conditions? Do you recommend certain restrictions that I need to follow?
Do you have any print materials or brochures that I can bring home to read? Can you recommend any informative websites regarding my condition?
Besides these questions and the other questions in your list, make sure you ask other questions that you think are important in better understanding and managing your condition.
Before performing any tests and examinations, your doctor may need to assess the possible reasons for your tremor like drug side effects, too much intake of caffeine, or thyroid disease. In order to gather as much information as he can, your doctor may ask certain questions related to your health. The questions may go like these:
What part of your body is affected?
When did you first notice your symptoms?
Did your symptoms arise all of a sudden?
What things worsen your tremor?
What things improve your tremor?
Do you often drink alcohol? Do you take in too much caffeine?
Do any of your family members have tremors?
Have you had any head injury in the past?
Is your tremor temporarily relieved by drinking alcohol?
When you’re under emotional stress or perform certain tasks does you tremor worsen?
When you sleep, does your tremor disappear?
What are the drugs you are taking presently? Some drugs can cause tremor side effects. Therefore listing down all your medications is an important thing since it helps your doctor to come up with the correct diagnosis.
Dr. Jack Handlin is an experienced acupuncturist, Chinese herbalist and oriental reproductive medicine specialist at Tree of Life Acupuncture & Chinese Herbal Medicine in Bellevue, WA.