(CARLSBAD, CA) – Ever leave your doctor’s office feeling dazed and confused about your diagnosis? Or walk out of the hair salon wishing your stylist hadn’t cut your tresses quite so short? If so, you’re one of countless women who report that they have difficulty speaking up when it comes to talking with health, wellness, and beauty professionals.
From adolescents to seniors, some women shy away from asking questions or making requests, fearing that their words will “rock the boat.” And yet, voicing questions and concerns is one of the most important steps in taking charge of your own personal well-being.
Jazzercise Founder and CEO Judi Sheppard Missett has been a health advocate for more than 40 years. Missett gives these tips for speaking up, in all areas of your life, from your health and wellness, to beauty and fashion.
The doctor’s office – Before entering your doctor’s office, make a list of your symptoms that caused you to make the appointment in the first place. Talk with your doctor about each item on your list. When your doctor makes a diagnosis, don’t hesitate to ask questions. Learn the reasons for this diagnosis, possible methods to relieve symptoms, and potential side effects of medication. You should walk out of your doctor’s office feeling empowered with knowledge.
The dentist – The next time that you get your teeth cleaned, ask for a lesson from your hygienist. Most hygienists are thrilled to show you how to properly brush and floss, so that you can take better care of your teeth and gums at home. When your dentist reviews your x-rays, ask if there are any potential trouble spots – areas that don’t yet have cavities, but show signs of decay. You may be able to prevent a cavity from forming if you work with your dentist ahead of time.
The gym – Have a nagging injury? Recovering from a recent bout of illness? Talk to your exercise instructor. Your instructor can show you movement modifications to help you stay safe, but only if you let her know that you need assistance.
The hair salon – Don’t be shy about telling your hairstylist what you like and dislike. And definitely don’t wait until the final snip of the scissors to voice concerns. Build open communication with your stylist. Ask her how a particular cut will work with your hair’s texture, thickness, and length. Bring in pictures of your favorite styles if you have difficulty articulating your desires.
The nail salon – Many of us wonder about the safety of nail salons, but feel embarrassed to ask. Go ahead and ask the salon manager about cleaning procedures for instruments. If there is anything that you prefer the salon not do, such as use a razor on your calluses or cut your cuticles, then tell them.
The health spa – Tell your massage therapist which areas you want her to concentrate on and how much pressure you prefer. If certain scents bother you, request that your therapist use a different oil, or bring your own. If you need a potty break, just let her know. Your experience will be much more enjoyable if you’re not battling a full bladder.
Whether you’re visiting the doctor, dentist, or beauty salon, remember that you are responsible for your own well-being. Ask questions. The professionals aren’t mind readers, after all. If you find that your health care or beauty professional won’t listen to your requests, then take your business elsewhere.
Jazzercise, created by Judi Sheppard Missett, is the world's leading dance-fitness program with more than 7,800 instructors teaching 32,000 classes weekly in all 50 states and 32 countries. For more than 40 years, millions of people of all ages and fitness levels have reaped the benefits of this comprehensive fitness program, designed to enhance cardiovascular endurance, strength, and flexibility. For more information on Jazzercise go to jazzercise.com or call (800)FIT-IS-IT or (760)476-1750.