Illness lining every corridor, the weak and the lame filling beds and superbugs lurking around every corner – with these horror-laden visions, it’s no wonder some people are terrified of hospitals.
UK hospitals in particular have long been seen as cannon fodder for the news media. Most days, they’ll be subjected to the kind of headlines normally reserved for convicted criminals.
“MRSA SURGE” and “SWINE FLUE SHOCKER” will be written next to pictures of your local hospital. And as you stare at this alarming front page, you can’t help but dread your check-up at a hospital next week.
But nosocomephobia, as it’s known in medical circles, is ultimately an irrational fear – and its only real effect is to hinder effective medical treatment.
So what can you do to battle your medical jitters? Start with a few of these tips.
Know waste, love cleanliness
Hospitals, by and large, don’t take on all their cleaning duties themselves. Instead, they farm out their needs to private companies to lighten the load.
Clinical waste, general maintenance, floor cleaning – all this and more could be in the capable hands of a company outside the NHS.
And finding out about them is simple. All you have to do is hunt down their company online and take note of their high-quality service.
Despite operating on limited budgets, hospitals will rarely hire cleaning companies with a poor reputation. After all, just imagine the headlines.
Unless you’ve hit on a real stinker, you’ll be pleased with what you unearth about these private cleaning contractors. It’ll give you reassurance that you won’t be staying in a fleapit.
Trying to remain hygienic when you’re ill is like trying to ride a stallion through thick woodland; eventually you’ll grow too tired to hold on.
Even something as simple as the flu can leave you struggling to bother showering. But if you’re staying in hospital for a protracted period, keeping clean is vital to warding off any additional illness.
Stock up on cleaning products and create a hygiene kit before you enter your local infirmary. And follow hospital protocol to the letter – it exists for a reason, you know.
It’s good to talk
Some doctors still conform to dated notions, giving you the bedside manner of a cold fish and leaving you as reassured as a quivering wreck.
But most medical practitioners are a new and improved iteration – they understand that it’s good to listen to patient queries.
The more professional the doctor, the better the bedside manner. Ask as many questions as you like – they’re here to help, and to make you feel at ease in your surroundings.