You’ve suffered in silence with allergies for a long time, but finally made that oh-so-important appointment with an allergist. Your first appointment is finally here, and relief is in sight! But you may find yourself overwhelmed with questions or unsure of what info you need to share. Don’t sweat—your allergist is there to help every step of the way.
Here are five key questions to ask at your very first allergist appointment:
1. Will I need allergy testing?
Your allergist may plan to run tests on you at an upcoming visit, so don’t be afraid to ask for the specifics. You want to be sure your doc is testing for all of your potential triggers.
2. What do these test results mean?
Your allergist may already have test results run by your general practitioner. Don’t be intimidated by medical jargon—if it’s unclear, ask! It’s important that you know what exactly it is you’re allergic to.
3. How do I best manage my allergy?
Whether it’s medication, avoiding certain skin care products or detergents, or looking for food ingredients to avoid, your allergist can help get you started on the way to an allergy-managing lifestyle.
4. Could my allergy get better or worse as time goes by?
It’s not always possible for your doctor to be able to predict this, but ask anyway. Knowing this can help you plan ahead and be prepared.
5. When should I see you again?
Just like asking for a second date, don’t be shy about putting yourself out there! Make sure you’re clear on if you need another visit and how soon it should be. If possible, schedule it before you leave the office.
You probably have many other thoughts and questions, but these are some essential basics to get you started. It may be helpful to write these questions down in a notebook to bring to your appointment so you don’t forget in the heat of the moment. You can even take notes as your questions get answered. If you do leave the appointment and realize you forgot to ask or mention something important, you can always call the office. Remember that your allergist wants to help you navigate the world of living with allergies in the safest, most effective way possible, so don’t hesitate to ask!
If you have any thoughts or questions or need to schedule an initial allergist appointment, feel free to contact AAPRI anytime.