Raising a family is not an easy feat, but there are so many resources available that can help ease some of your stress. Who knows your family better than you? No one. You are your family’s best advocate. Don’t be afraid to speak up. You have a right to be an informed participant in your family’s healthcare. You are captain of the team, but it’s important to find other key players to help you reach your family’s health and wellness goals.
The first step is finding a primary care physician who you can count on to help you manage your family’s health. They provide preventive care, like wellness checks, screenings and immunizations, and can also diagnose and manage common chronic conditions. They are the gatekeepers of your family’s health information and can guide you in the right direction if specialty care is needed.
Request information verbally by your doctor and also in writing, so you can review it later. Ask questions. It can be helpful to write down questions that you have for an appointment ahead of time, so you leave feeling confident that you’ve received the information that you need. Keep a list of your family’s medications, allergies and chronic illnesses with you always.
Your insurance company may be an untapped resource to support your healthy lifestyle. Many insurance companies have incentive programs that reward you for healthy habits you already have, things like completing well checkups for your kids, getting a flu shot or attending OB/GYN appointments during your pregnancy are just a few examples of healthy practices you can get rewarded for completing. Just contact your insurance company to find out what sort of incentive programs they offer. You are the champion of your family’s health and your choices impact the health of your family. Women who stop smoking often encourage and support their spouse’s smoking cessation as well. Women who make healthy changes to their diets, prepare healthy meals for their families.
The Impact WV Program has Patient Navigators that are available to assist you in getting connected with any of the resources that you may need to make positive changes or support the healthy habits you already practice.
And one last thing, please remember to take time to take good care of yourself! It’s so easy to get caught up in providing care for all those around you that you make yourself last on the list. You set a great example by taking care of yourself…Healthy moms support healthy families!