Marley's Health Advice
About Me
Marley's Health Advice

Hey! My name is Marley and this is my health advice blog. Maintaining your health is easy when you are young. However, as you get older, you may develop illnesses and disorders as a result of your lifestyle choices. When I hit the age of 50 years old, I suddenly realised that I had a lot of problems which I had been ignoring for a long time. I decided to visit my doctor and seek help. Over the past year, I have worked closely with my doctor to improve my lifestyle and my health. I hope my blog inspires you to do the same.

Marley's Health Advice

How to Talk to Your GP About Mental Health

Grace Henderson

It is estimated that one in five Australians will experience a mental health problem each year. Knowing how to recognise the signs that you may be mental distress and how to talk to your GP about how you are feeling can help you to get the treatment and support you need. Below is a guide which will help you to prepare for and get the most out of your appointment.

Things to do before your appointment

By preparing for your appointment, you can make sure that you communicate everything you need to communicate to your GP. Before you appointment you should:

  • Make a list of symptoms with a note explaining how long you have been experiencing them
  • Make a list of any stressful or upsetting things which are happening or which have recently occurred
  • Make a list of any medications you are currently taking and any existing medical conditions
  • Consider asking a friend or family member to attend the appointment with you so they can offer support.
  • Write down any questions you have for your GP so you do not forget them

Things to do during the appointment

When you are in the consulting room, it is important that you are as honest and open with the doctor as you can be. While it can be difficult to talk about some feelings, doing so will allow the doctor to properly diagnose the illness or disorder which is affecting you. If you withhold information now, it could lead to the doctor misdiagnosing you. Remember, your GP is a trained medical professional who wants to support and help you. There isn't much you can tell your doctor which will shock them so you do not need to feel silly or embarrassed. Everything you say to your doctor is treated in the strictest confidence and will not be disclosed to other people without your consent.

What to expect after your appointment

Once your GP has examined you and asked some questions, they will make a diagnosis. If they feel that it is appropriate, they may prescribe you medication. Medication is mostly used to treat depression and anxiety. They may also recommend that you visit a counsellor or psychotherapist so you can talk through your thoughts and feelings. Occasionally, a GP may refer a patient on to a community mental health team or hospital so they can receive further treatment and support.

If you have any concerns about your mental health, contact your GP today.