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The Incredible Shrinking Doctor's Appointment

Top Five Time Wasters

Stay away from these common exam room time traps:

Small talk: A quick exchange about the weather is okay, but going on and on about topics unrelated to your health isn't.

Miscellaneous gripes: The lack of parking, chilliness of the waiting room or meager magazine selection is probably not in your doctor's control, so don't bring them up. The same goes for complaints about doctors you've seen in the past.

Billing/insurance questions: When checking in for your appointment, ask who in the office can address those concerns. It's not your doctor.

Irrelevant medical info: Though your family's medical history is important, stories about your friend's health problems won't help the doc treat you.

Little white lies: No one likes to admit they forget to take their medicine, don't exercise or drink too much, but not answering your doctor's questions truthfully will make it harder for her to effectively treat you.

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