A lot of people aren’t completely sure about what a dietitian does.
Some people think we are the food police. Some people think we are going to take away all of their cupcakes. Some people think that just because they had a bad experience with one dietitian, they will get the same exact level of service and care at the next. Some people have absolutely no clue what to expect.
Let me give you the run down of what it’s like to work with us.
Setting The Appointment
When someone calls to inquire about an appointment, the first question we ask is, “What is your main nutrition concern?” This is crucial information so we can pair you with the dietitian that will best suite your needs. Then, of course, we find the best time in your schedule to come in for your first visit.
If you have health insurance, sometimes we are able to check your nutrition coverage while we are on the phone. Other times, we call your insurance provider for you to determine your benefits.
Before Your First Visit
We use online charting software with a patient portal, and before your first visit, you are asked to log on and complete your intake form. This intake form is comprehensive covering health history, medications, goals and habits. Getting this information ahead of time helps us prepare to help you at your visit.
Not computer savvy? Fear not; we can also send you a paper intake form to complete and bring to your first appointment.
During The Appointment
This is where were start to stand out from other dietitians. We pride ourselves on our extremely customized, patient-centered approach to nutrition counseling. We go through your intake form together, asking clarification questions. Then we continue to ask more probing questions to get to the bottom of why you are in our office and what you hope to happen by working with us. Once we are both on the same page about what you have tried before and your level of willingness to make changes, we build a plan together to get from where you are now to your goals.
If you come in looking for weight loss guidance, you don’t leave our office with a useless calorie-counting handout or the same advice as the patient before you. If you say you are a picky eater, we don’t convince you that forcing yourself to eat broccoli is the only plausible path to health. Everyone has different goals, preferences, health histories, budgets, family structures, cooking skills and lifestyles. We take each of these facets into consideration while building your plan with you.
The praise we hear most often is our patients are thankful that we listen
to them and we believe
them. Most initial appointments are 60 to 90 minutes, which gives us plenty of time to really hear about what you are experiencing with your health. If a previous provider has ignored parts of our story or has dismissed some of our symptoms, we can start to think that our symptoms are in our head and/or there is nothing to do about them. We don’t believe that. We believe that you know your body better than anyone else and we believe that you deserve a healthy happy life free from body aches, belly pains, bad skin, fatigue and brain fog.
After The Initial Appointment
It is very rare that a patient will only see us for a single visit. A lot of times, our patients already come in knowing some elements that will help them get closer to the health goals they desire; they just have difficulty putting their tools to work, having them stick, and need support with troubleshooting along the way.
That’s where we come in.
As our relationship progresses together, we regularly evaluate what is working and what is not, then continue to revise the plan until we discover what is effective and sustainable. And if or when life throws you a curve ball (change in medical issues, schedule, stress level, budget, etc.), we are right there with you building a detour to find a revised path in the right direction.
Whether we see patients at our office or on-site at one of our corporate locations, we utilize the same process for customized, patient-centered nutrition counseling. If you think you could benefit from our approach, we would love to hear from you and help you work towards your healthiest and happiest self.
Laura Greenhow is the founder of Summerfield Custom Wellness, a Wilmington-based nutrition firm counseling employees toward a shift in health-consciousness.She and her team facilitate programs wherein healthy choices begin to come automatically and are aligned with what the body needs.They see individuals and also work with companies ranging from five to 5,000 employees as they strive for a healthier workforce and a healthier Wilmington.Laura holds a master’s degree in Public Health from UNC-Chapel Hill, with clinical rotations that included New Hanover Regional Medical Center. Learn more at www.summerfieldcustomwellness.com or call (910) 663-5166.