Health from Home
Availability of telemedicine continues to growBy Familyfeatures.com
If there is a silver lining to the challenges the pandemic created for families and seniors, it may be the expansion and affordability of virtual care. The ability to see a doctor today with little notice, using your phone, computer or tablet, offers a new level of flexibility in accessing health care.
Virtual care, or telemedicine, can span a wide range of services to address a family’s health needs without going to a doctor’s office and provides easy access to experts and specialists. Telemedicine services are covered by most insurance providers.
From care for specific illnesses to managing ongoing concerns, here are some ways that telemedicine might be a good fit for your family’s health care needs. To learn more about telemedicine, you can visit websites such as teladoc.com and your own insurance company’s website.
In the past, if your doctor’s office couldn’t get you in to help treat conditions like allergies, sinus infections or other common illnesses, urgent care was one of your few remaining options. Now, virtual care can address non-emergency needs and everyday illnesses in place of urgent care.
Even with a referral, it can take weeks or months to get an appointment with some specialists. One example is dermatology. Instead of waiting months to be seen by a dermatologist, with a virtual provider, you can seek and receive treatment in a matter of hours.
As a result of the pandemic and related social implications, many organizations have been reporting substantial upticks in requests for mental health support. Phone and video visits for mental health have been shown to be as effective as in-person treatment, according to the Telemental Health Institute.
Most people think of their health needs in terms of reactive care for known problems, but it can also be useful for wellness care, such as nutrition. Registered dietitians can provide virtual consultations to help ensure everyone, including family members with special dietary needs, receives proper nutrients.
Get that second opinion
If you’re unsure about a diagnosis, need help choosing treatment, have medical questions or concerns, or want an expert’s advice or second opinion, some virtual care providers can connect you with leading specialists to give you the answers and confidence you need to make informed decisions about your family’s health.
Make time for self-care
Using telemedicine is a form of self-care, just as anytime you address your mental and physical needs. Other ways to care for yourself mentally and emotionally include making time for enjoyable activities, such as listening to music, painting, drawing and working with wood. Carve out time to connect with family and friends and help your kids to do the same.