Today, after a half and half kind of day with regards to my mood, it was most definitely swayed towards being completely rubbish after a long awaited doctors appointment this afternoon.
I don’t need to ask, to know people really struggle to get an appointment to see a doctor nowadays, the lines are always jammed from 1 second past the time they go online. The appointments, once you get through are almost always gone, and you’re either offered the last one, an emergency “sit and wait” one, or told to call the next day. If you need to pre-book one for a specific reason, you do so with an appointment given weeks away.
So to even get an appointment today, I was pretty chuffed to say the least.
That feeling disappeared around 30 seconds into my appointment.
Because I’d waited so long to get 10 minutes with a doctor, a couple of other symptoms/issues had cropped up. Not knowing if they were related to each other I decided to hit the doctor with all three. Outside is a notice saying the slots for each patient are 10 minutes each.
I first told the Doctor, about a dodgy mole I wanted looked at. As a mother, wife, daughter, sister and friend, I would give the same advice to any of the people I speak to, about getting moles checked at the first sign of them changing. You really never can be too careful when it comes to dealing with something like that. So, I showed the doctor the mole in question. He didn’t touch it, he didn’t measure it, he didn’t look at it really. “That looks fine”, were his words.
I then told him that I’ve felt a bit groggy recently, which culminated in me nearly passing out on the school run yesterday, while in the care of my newly-walking-on-school-runs, 2 and a half year old daughter. He ‘hmmmms’ for a moment, looks at my patient notes on his screen, turns to me and says, “you do have anxiety it says here”.
I say yes but its been pretty under control recently, and I don’t think it was related, but why? Does he think it is? “Yes” is his answer.
Oh OK then…..lets hit him with the last one, the initial issue I was coming for before all the other stuff started happening.
I’ve had the most excruciating pain in my lower abdomen for the last few months, to the point its worse than period pain. I can’t pinpoint the pain location (as I’m not a qualified medical practitioner) but I think its around my ovary area as it seems pretty localised to me.
I tell him all of this, kind of expecting him to say “hop up on the bed and I’ll have a feel of your abdomen”, this didn’t happen. I also expected he’d possibly order an ultrasound or SOMETHING practical. This didn’t happen.
Instead, he said, “to be honest I think its your anxiety”. In shock (and disbelief at what he was saying I responded with, “so you think ALL of these things are to do with my Anxiety?” He nodded……
The man hadn’t as far as I’m concerned practiced anything medical on me whatsoever during my 7 minutes, (please note, I didn’t even go over my 10 minute time with my three symptoms/issues), but had amazingly managed to put EVERYTHING down to my Mental Health issues.
I put on my fake smile, stood up, said thank you through gritted teeth and left, trying not to burst into tears and scream at anyone who came near me.
I’m so SO sick of this. How on earth are we supposed to work alongside the NHS to stop the stigma of mental health issues when the NHS are employing people like this to diagnose people. This is not on! This is not on at all!
I for one will be going back to the doctors (when I can get another appointment) and getting a proper doctor to do what I think I need doing.
What concerns me more than anything is how many patients are being spoken to and treated like I was today, and leave believing what the “professional” in front of them has said, that it’s all in their head!
This NEEDS to change. We can’t change the stigma of mental health issues until people like this are properly educated on the subject.
This HAS to change.