When it comes to your health, honesty isn't just the best policy, it's the only policy. The long, sometimes tedious forms doctors have you fill out do serve an important purpose because your doctors need to know what is going on with your health status and history before treating you for any problem. The Doctors reveal the information you must share with your physician.
... Before Surgery
Prior to going under the knife, it is essential that your body is prepared to endure the surgery and heal properly. While many may reach for ibuprofen and aspirin, these over-the-counter treatments for aches and pains actually reduce the blood's ability to clot, which can cause excessive bleeding. Because of this, physicians instruct their patients to avoid these pain relievers before a procedure. Doctors also recommend staying away from fizzing antacids before surgery, which can also put you in danger by reducing the bodies blood-clotting ability. Be sure to avoid these medications before an operation, and if you do take them, your doctor needs to know.
See how ibuprofen, aspirin and antacids affect your blood.
If you are considering rhinoplasty, yet using nasal decongestant sprays to alleviate a stuffy or runny nose, be sure to tell your surgeon.
"[Decongestants] can help you breathe better," plastic surgeon Dr. Drew Ordon says. "But what happens is that the inside of your nose actually gets sensitized to the spray or the drops and you get a rebound phenomenon, which means that when it wears off, all the blood vessels open up. So what happens is you are set up to get more bleeding in surgery and have poor healing. It's something that the doctor really needs to know, and you actually need to be off of these things for three months before undergoing elective nasal surgery."
Did you have a body piercing as a teen, but removed it long ago? Before going under the knife, you need to tell your doctor about any and all body piercings -- even if they have been removed. Dr. Ordon explains why.
...About Your Sex Life
Suffering from reoccurring yeast infections? The lubricant you use during sex may be to blame. Dr. Lisa Masterson reveals which lubricants can put you at risk for infection, and which ones won't.
And it's not just the ladies who need to disclose information. Men need to open up to their doctors about their sex life as well. Failing to tell your doctor that you're taking erectile dysfunction medication can be fatal. E.R. physician Dr. Travis Stork demonstrates why.
...About Your Mouth
If your gums are bleeding, you may be inclined to tell your dentist, but did your know that you also need to tell your primary care physician? The Doctors explain why bleeding gums could be a sign of a bigger problem.
Brushing your teeth is essential to good hygiene and health, and the best way to maintain a healthy mouth is to start young. Actress Jennie Garth volunteers with Smiles Across America, an organization that helps underserved children get the oral hygiene care they need, to teach kids how to take care of their teeth.
See Jennie's favorite brushing tip that she uses with her own children!