Being in the internet age, we as humans have the ability to go into the enormous online world that the internet provides us. We look up everything on the internet. From funny cat videos, our news sources, our banks, and even our ability to buy food, it is all available on the world wide web. Nowadays, people are even getting their medical advice from the internet. The term for people who research and diagnose their medical symptoms online is called a cyberchondriac. The new way to get their medical care is through self diagnosing from symptoms they have, then researching on the web.
Self diagnosis, for milder conditions, has been around longer than the internet. You have a cough and sore throat? You usually deduce that it’s the common cold, but in today’s age self diagnosis has gone to a larger medical spectrum. People have the ability to just type in their symptoms online, no matter what they may be, and they can find out what they have just from internet articles. Conditions like asthma, high blood pressure, diabetes, STI’s and more are all researched day in and day out to figure out if someone has it or not. It’s hard not to save a little money sometimes by just going online to see what’s wrong with you, instead of going to a doctor. However, search crazy people vow on getting all their medical care from self diagnosis with more than a little help from the internet. Is self diagnosis actually safe? Let’s talk about the advantages and disadvantages of self diagnosis.
The advantages of self diagnosis are obvious. You can type in your symptoms and get a quick and easy diagnosis of whatever ailment is bothering you without getting a doctor’s bill. It saves you money, time and worries over going to a doctor’s office. For people who are scared to go to the doctor, or need to save their money, this can be a saving grace.
Aside from the easiness, and the amount of money it could save you, self diagnosis can be dangerous for your health. For one reason, you could be only seeing the tip of the iceberg with some of the symptoms a patient could be feeling. Some diseases or conditions show themselves through symptoms that are common with simple sicknesses, like the flu or the common cold. People will ignore symptoms that they diagnosed themselves as a cold for weeks and weeks, when really these symptoms could be from something more. As well as this, some internet sites have sources that may not be accurate or from a real doctor. Making the patient believe that their symptoms are could be from one sickness when it could be from something different.
Both sides of self diagnosing have appeasing advantages and alarming disadvantages. It can be hard to decide what to do in a situation. A solution to this would be to look up your symptoms online and treat what the symptoms show with home remedies or medicines like Tylenol, allergy relievers or aspirins. Once you look up what these symptoms are on the internet, call your doctor and make an appointment, your doctor could give you a second opinion. If you don’t have a doctor you see regularly visit a walk in clinic at your earliest convenience, they can also give you a second opinion for what you found on the internet.
With your health, it is always beneficial to be safe and try to get back to being healthy. Getting a trained professional to let you know what is wrong is always the best option to take.