If you have questions about your health, the Internet is probably one of the first places you look for advice. But have you noticed that there seems to be a lot of conflicting information out there? If you search online for dieting tips, for example, you could read a hundred articles and come up with a hundred different suggestions. So, how do you know what’s true and what’s false? Here are some hints to help you sort the wheat from the chaff and find accurate health information.
Seeking medical advice in person
There’s a reason why doctors will advise you to seek advice if you don’t feel well. Health professionals undergo extensive training, which gives them knowledge and an expert eye. They can spot things we maybe haven’t even noticed. If you have concerns about your health, the best thing to do is to see a trained professional.
As well as using their own expertise and experience, doctors, dentists, and opticians also have access to the latest equipment and technology, which puts them in a much better place to diagnose and treat a patient. The fact that you’re actually seeing somebody face to face also enables you to receive tailored care. If you’re searching online for symptoms, you may find some useful information, but the articles you read will adopt a one size fits all approach. When you see a doctor, they will take your medical and family history into account, and they can conduct a physical examination.
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Finding reliable online resources
If you are guilty of being a Google doctor, and who isn’t these days, it’s advisable to use reputable sites and sources. Look out for sites that are run by hospitals, health departments or pharmacies. If you’re interested in healthy living tips, choose what you read carefully. If you see posts about miracle teas adding years to your life expectancy or diets that will make you lose 10 lb overnight, adopt a cautious approach. As a general rule, it’s always good to read claims that are backed up by scientific study and articles related to evidence-based medicine like those on HealthyButSmart.com. It’s also wise to delve deeper into the science. If a claim is based on a study conducted on two participants it probably isn’t as reliable as a clinical trial involving thousands of patients, which has been conducted by experienced researchers at a prestigious university. If you’re interested in finding out more about risk factors for cancer, for example, visit sites like https://www.cancer.org/ rather than doing a general search online.
If you’re interested in buying health-related products, look out for sponsored posts. Reviews can be really useful, but take care to watch out for posts offered by people who have been paid to trial specific products. It’s better to visit a site that offers impartial reviews and has multiple contributions.
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In a day and age when we’re reliant on the Internet, it can be increasingly difficult to know what to believe and who to trust. One day, there’s an article telling us what we need to do to stay healthy and the next you see a post advising you to do the opposite. Hopefully, this guide will enable you to find accurate information quickly and easily.