Medical treatment this day and age has become quite complicated. There is a ton of information out there. Doctors are expected to wade through new studies and information on a moment-to-moment basis AND see an overwhelming number of patients on a daily basis. That makes for frustration on the part of doctor’s and patients.

Adding to this is a pervasive attitude that if something goes wrong it is someone else’s fault. If a patient is overweight or obese, it is the fault of the food industry, which has gotten them addicted to sugar and fat. If someone is injured on the sidewalk, it is the city’s fault. If medication doesn’t work, it is the doctor’s fault.

It is time that we all stop blaming everyone else and start looking at ourselves. When it comes to your own health I have some suggestions. If you have a weight problem, it is time to start eating healthier foods, eating less and moving more. No excuses! If you have a medical condition, become knowledgeable about it. There are some excellent academic websites on the Internet. Johns Hopkins, Mayo Clinic, and the Cleveland Clinic are great places to look. Once you know what you have, find ways to improve things. It could involve changes in diet and exercise patterns and/or taking medication.

If you are prescribed medication, know the name and the dosage. Keep a list. It always amazes me when patients have no idea what they are taking or how much. Take your medication as prescribed. If you have side effects or it is not working let your doctor know.

Think about how you got into your health situation and change it for the better. It is estimated that 80% of medical illness is due to lifestyle choices. You can take your statin drugs to lower your cholesterol and keep eating donuts or you can eat a healthy Mediterranean style diet and exercise. You can use your inhalers for asthma and COPD and/or you can quit smoking. You can wait for the miracle weight loss pill to come on the market or you can start taking care of yourself. It is amazing what a few simple changes can do.

It is time to be accountable for you health. You and you alone are responsible. It is time to stop finding blame and start looking for solutions. Take control of your health. The time is now.