The internet has provided many great benefits and one of the best is constant access to information. If you have a health concern, you can do a quick Google search and get millions of results. The only downside is that the internet allows anyone to contribute. This means a good portion of the medical information you will receive is not going to be accurate. How will you know what health information you can trust?
Tips for finding health information
While there is an onslaught of questionable information present on the internet, there are just as many good and reliable sources. As a rule of thumb, websites sponsored by the government usually share accurate health information. You can reach all the federal websites in one place by visiting www.usa.gov. Similarly, well-known organizations and medical schools post reliable health information.
There are a series of questions you can ask yourself if you want to make sure a website you are gathering health information from is trustworthy.
- Who hosts the website? Each website is funded by an organization or a single person. Knowing who they are will allow you to understand the purpose of the website.
- Who wrote and reviewed the information? Trustworthy information is usually accompanied by information on the author. You want to ensure that the author or the person reviewing their information is an expert on the subject matter.
- When was it written? Older information is not always terrible but when it comes to your health, you want to make sure you are getting all the up-to-date knowledge.
- What is the purpose of the site? The purpose of the site says a lot about how you should judge its content. If they are looking to sell a product, their health information might be a little bias.
- Does it offer miracle solutions? Any website that offers one remedy to cure all illnesses should be used with caution. Similarly, watch out for dramatic wording or anything that seems too good to be true.
While scrolling through social media, you are going to be seeing posts that promise a quick cure or a celebrity promoting some health product. It can be easy to get caught up, but it is important to understand that social media allows every individual to post information without any proper fact-checking. Another person’s experience with an illness is not going to be the same for you. Similarly, what you see on social media is not enough to diagnose yourself. Use your best judgment when on social media apps.
Ultimately, if you want trusted and accurate health information, you should make an appointment to see your doctor. If that is not something that you want to do, you can use trusted government health sites, or blogs written by experts in their particular field. Your health is important, and you should do your part in making sure you receive the right information.
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We hope this information on how to find health information you can trust is helpful.
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