There are plenty of reasons why the internet is a great resource. It provides quick access to all kinds of information. The only issue is that the internet allows everyone to contribute. This makes the search for reliable and accurate health information quite difficult. How will you know what health information you can trust?
Tips for finding health information
While there is a lot of questionable health information on the internet, there are just as many reliable sources. A good rule to follow is that most government-sponsored websites usually share accurate health information. If you visit www.usa.gov, you can reach all the federal websites in one place. Also, most well-known organizations and medical schools provide reliable health information.
If you come across a website that is sharing health information and you want to know whether you can trust it, there are some questions that you can ask yourself.
- Who hosts the website? Every website gets its funding from somewhere or someone. Knowing who the contributors are will help you determine the vision and purpose of the website.
- Who wrote and reviewed the information? Trustworthy information usually comes with information on the author. You want to ensure that the author is knowledgeable on the subject matter, or that their information was reviewed by an expert.
- When was it written? When it comes to your health, you want to make sure that you are following up-to-date information. This does not mean that older information is useless but using the most current information is the better option.
- What is the purpose of the site? You can judge the content better once you know the purpose of the website. If it is trying to sell a product, the information may be a little bias.
- Does it offer miracle solutions? You want to be cautious with a website that promises one remedy to cure many illnesses. It is also good to look out for dramatic wording and anything that seems too good to be true.
While you scroll through social media, you are going to be bombarded with posts that share some miracle cure, or an influencer promoting a health product. It is important to understand that social media gives every single person the opportunity to post any information without any proper fact-checking. Another person’s experience with an illness is not necessarily going to reflect your own. Be wary of trying to diagnose yourself based on what you have seen on social media. Always try to use your best judgment when exposed to the health information on social media.
Ultimately, if you want to be sure you are receiving accurate and reliable health information, you should be making an appointment to see your doctor. If that is not possible, or necessary, you can refer to trusted government health sites and blogs written by medical experts.
Health Insurance Questions?
We hope this information on searching for trustworthy health information online is helpful.
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