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How should I talk to my doctor about my emotional problems?

Sheri D. Pruitt
Psychology
Everyone feels sad or anxious at one time or another. But what do you do when those feelings start getting the best of you? You may feel awkward when talking with your doctor, but emotional problems are just as serious and treatable as physical problems. To make it easier, talk with your doctor about your emotional symptoms just as you would about physical symptoms. Tell your doctor when the symptoms started, how often they occur, and how the symptoms are impacting your daily life. Make sure you discuss and understand your treatment options. This might mean psychotherapy, medication, or a follow-up visit. This strategy will make the conversation easier, but the most important action you can take is to follow through with treatment. If left untreated, emotional symptoms can get much worse.
Living SMART: Five Essential Skills to Change Your Health Habits Forever

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Living SMART: Five Essential Skills to Change Your Health Habits Forever

The myriad of books and programs that encourage people to stop smoking, get organized, spend less, or exercise more tend to focus on what or why to change, but rarely explain how to change. Living...
Your family doctor should be well versed in treating emotional and mental health problems. He or she should be able to refer you to the appropriate resources in your community, if needed. You should be able to comfortably discuss your physical health as well as your emotional health with your personal doctor.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.