Want to Take Control of Your Wellness? Here Are 5 Tips for Health Advocacy Today
Advocating for your health is one of the most important things you can do. It will help you lead a happier, healthier life, but you’ll also find that your confidence skyrockets as you learn to speak up for yourself. If you’ve been looking to become your very own wellness ambassador, keep reading as Diary of a Gay Dad shares 5 essential tips for doing so today.
1. Stay Informed about Your Health
Read up on health and wellness topics that interest you, and ensure you understand any medical information or instructions from your doctor or health care team. If there’s something you don’t understand, don’t hesitate to ask questions. After all, the more you know about your health, the better equipped you’ll be to make informed decisions about your care.
A big part of being your health advocate is referring to the right professionals. Taking advantage of free preventative care under the Affordable Care Act is an excellent place to start. You should also find the right healthcare professional for your health goals and needs. LGBTQ+ families often have unique needs in healthcare and advocacy, and finding a professional who respects and supports your wellness will be critical to achieving your health goals.
3. Take Care of Your Mind and Emotional Wellbeing
Physical health is closely intertwined with mental and emotional health, so taking care of all aspects of ourselves is essential. Make sure to schedule time for activities that make you happy and help you relax, such as spending time with friends and family, reading, listening to music, or getting outside in nature. According to Everyday Health, taking care of your mental health will help you be your best self and better able to advocate for your own physical health.
An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure, as they say. So, in addition to staying informed and speaking up for yourself, another essential way to be an advocate for your own health is to prioritize prevention. This means making lifestyle choices that will help you stay healthy, such as eating a nutritious diet, regularly exercising, and getting enough sleep. It also means being proactive about your health by getting regular check-ups and screenings and taking steps to prevent injuries and illness, such as wearing a seatbelt and sunscreen.
Finally, being aware of your rights as a patient is essential. According to HIV Legal Network, this involves knowing your rights to privacy and confidentiality, understanding your right to informed consent, and being aware of your right to access your own medical records. It would help if you also were constantly maintaining your documents. This way, they will be ready for easy access and can be reviewed for errors after a visit or prescription. In addition, saving your health records as a PDF to your iPhone is a great way to access important files and documents on the go. When you do so, you won’t have to rely on WiFi to access your documents – just remember where you saved it, and you’ll be good to go!
Advocating for your health can seem daunting, but it’s important to remember that you have the right to be involved in your own care. By staying informed, speaking up, and taking care of yourself, you can be your best advocate and ensure you get the care and treatment you need.