Seeing Your Doctor? How To Make The Most Of Your 15 minutes

If your only choice is seeing a General Practitioner for chronic or mental illness, you will have to take on the additional responsibility to make sure you’re getting the best healthcare. What you can’t expect is a General Practitioner to be a one-stop shop, they have 15 minutes per patient and treat the most common illnesses. Once your 15 minutes is up, you have to save questions for the next appointment. And while it may be particularly frustrating to have to leave, it can help you to get into the right mindset for research.

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We’re not talking about Dr Google here (which can be a very dangerous rabbit hole to go down), but there can be changes in lifestyle and pain management that may work. It’s not a one size fits all approach, but there are remedies like CBD cream that could work (the is a handy resource) or it could be about focusing on mindfulness or more natural techniques like embracing the cold, as has been popularized by people like Wim Hof in recent years. But these approaches shouldn’t replace the help a General Practitioner can provide, just as long as you go into each appointment prepared.    

If seeing a General Practitioner for all your chronic illnesses, go into each meeting expecting three questions to get answered, if the conversation doesn’t go off track. Go prepared with questions, concerns or medicine issues but don’t expect more than 15 minutes unless your insurance company allows 30-minute appointments. I schedule 30 minutes with my GP on each visit, that lowers my stress level and allows us to talk more in-depth if needed.

This is a collaborative post.



  1. Thank you for raising this frustrating issue, which is made worse by the Covid restrictions. I’ve tried to book a thirty-minute appointment but haven’t been able to get one. I’ve been waiting for an online video appointment for two days now, and like you wrote Melinda, I have so many different and new symptoms recently that most GP’s don’t know how to treat. I cut my Consultant visits to once a year but now I wish I’d left it at three months,

    Liked by 1 person

        1. I made that mistake for too many years. So glad i now have the team I need. Some I don’t see very often but when I need them they are there. It differs in the Uk where you have to get referrals and all that, I can go back to see my specialist after the first referral without a problem. Some don’t even require a referral.

          Liked by 1 person

          1. Wow. But I suppose that’s what you guys pay for? I did speak to a GP on the telephone today and managed to discuss a few symptoms, for which she’s prescribed a new medication for a 2 week trial.
            After that I’ve to make another phone appointment, and perhaps I can squeeze in a few more symptoms lol.
            I think I’m going to go back to at least 6-monthly appointments with the Consultant, maybe even 3. I regret dropping it down to annually 😦

            Liked by 1 person

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