I have had to go to A and E and found the experience deeply uncomfortable. Lots of people noise etc.
I also have had to wait over a month and a half for a breathing issue to do with my throat. Despite my Gp saying it was urgent.
I got told many reasons why I had to wait so long. Inconsistency, a real pain with my suspected ASD. This prolonged agony got me thinking, do hospitals really understand ASD?
Think of their layout and lack of facilities.
Does anyone else think this?
I cannot stand interaction with any medical professionals. I find that they all seem to either consider me a liar, or to not actually listen to what I'm saying - they seem to get bored partway through the detailed explanation I'm providing for their benefit, cling onto one early word that's been used, and focus too heavily on that.
I was actually in hospital yesterday. I'd been ill for a week, and yesterday suddenly started struggling to breathe. I couldn't say more than three words without running out of breath. Now, it takes a lot to even get me to a GP never mind hospital - I have never in my adult life been to hospital for myself - because I only go for any medical help when I consider it 100% necessary.
So I went in, struggling to breathe. I was put into the waiting room for 4 hours. About two hours into that wait, my breathing improved. By the time I was seen, I was back to normal.
When the doctor called me in, I started with "I've had a cough for five days...". I then went on to explain how it was around 3.30 that day that I'd started struggling to breathe and couldn't even finish a sentence. The doctor responded by asking questions about my cough, listening to my chest and informing me that it wasn't a chest infection so would just be a normal cough, which would go better on its own, so I should go home. No reference at all to the breathing difficulties I'd had.
This seems to be a trend on every (rare) occasion that I seek medical help or advice. I'm treated like I'm stupid and asking for help for the tiniest and most insignificant thing. It's patronising.
My husband, apparently, does not have this problem. I can only assume it's the order he explains symptoms in, or that he notices a doctor going off on a tangent and has the courage to correct them where I don't.
I cope fine with the actual hospital environment, but can never get a medical professional to actually listen to what I'm saying.
Neurotypicals can handle only so much information at once, and you have to use short sentences. It's best to just tell them the 3 most important things you have to say and don't go beyond that until they start asking questions, at which point you can respond, but keep your responses brief and to the point. They have no attention span so it's best to just get your main message across right away to make sure it has been received. Once they get overloaded with information, they are practically useless at responding properly to any additional information they are given.
Regarding the original question: it's hard to tell whether the hospital environment really bothers us more than neurotypicals. I think it is an unpleasant experience for everyone. Since I'm not NT I wouldn't know how they feel about it, but surely nobody likes sitting around in a noisy waiting room for hours when they are ill enough to require a hospital.
I think this is what I need to get used to.
When they provide a vague question like 'What can I help with?', I always feel like they'd be able to better decide an appropriate course of action by knowing the progression of the illness, rather than just the moment that I decided medical help was necessary.
I feel like if I asked someone what was wrong and then had to ask loads of questions to get the details from them, that would frustrate me. But next time, I might try that. Perhaps I just should have said "I came in earlier because I couldn't breathe properly" and let them take it from there.
My husband is always so confused that whenever I speak to a medical professional, for myself or my daughter, I appear to be accused of making things up or wasting their time, yet he always finds them quite helpful or agreeable.
I suspect this is how they come up with this "huge number of people that go to A&E for a cold"... One way anyway.
Think A&E must be rather unpleasant to anybody. Guess it's difficult to do anything about lots of people and noises, but being placed on a bed that resembles more a large table in an otherwise empty room, with an incredibly bright light right above you, is something that's not totally necessary. Not saying it can be made cozy, but making people feel a little less exposed would probably be possible. And it would benefit everybody.
I certainly agree, I had to go to A&E a couple of months ago and it was torture! I also had to return several times for follow up appointments and they were nearly as bad, although for the latter times at least I was given prior notice so I was able to plan accordingly. My biggest lifesaver is knitting! No-one bats an eyelid at me ignoring everyone else and I lose all track of time when following a pattern so I don't get stressed out at how long it's taking :)
There are extensive roadworks outside my local hospital / GP practice that are planned to last "six to eight weeks" - so in local-council-speak that's probably more like three to four months. With the noise and wide-ranging traffic diversions the hell starts at least 15-mins before I even reach the building!
My 16 year old daughter and I have had several visits to hospital recently, the most recent at A&S last Sunday. My daughter was only diagnosed last year but has taken to wearing noise cancelling headphones because she can't stand the noise or the crowds. I don't know if it is the presence of the headphones or her look of extreme anxiety but on several occasions the nurse or Dr have offered to find her a quieter room to wait. I wish all the medical staff were like this but alas on the general medical ward they were quite the opposite and caused my high functioning autistic daughter great distress by making her stay in hospital in an unfamiliar environment for an additional night for no other reason than he wanted to see if she could drink a litre of water over night?!!!. I might be wrong but most people generally sleep through the night and my daughter has never drunk that much since she was born. Apologies for the rant.
My most recent experience in this regard was with a service user at work - a lad with low-functioning autism. He cut himself quite badly and had to go to A & E. It was all quite positive, in the end. The paramedic on the ambulance crew was an Aspie... and when he got to hospital, they put him straight in a room by himself and he was attended to by a nurse who was fully-experienced with dealing with autism. It may be, though, that his low-functioning status, with the additional risks that posed, meant that he got special treatment.
I hate attending A & E for myself, though. I tend to sit in the toilets rather than in the waiting rooms. I guess the 'friendliness' or otherwise in regard to ASC will differ between establishments. Not just with ASC, too. On my mother's final trip to A & E, a week before she passed away, it was like a cattle market when we arrived. The noise and bustle were very distressing for her (as well as for me). They managed to find mum a curtained-off space, but it was still very noisy - and we had a long wait. The staff did what they could, though, given the demands on their limited resources.
What I hate about hospitals is the smell of their disinfectant. The smell of people's sweat and human excrement is awful. So disinfectant is needed. But the particular one hospitals use. Makes me want to puke.