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Sick? 5 Reasons You Should Not Google Your Symptoms/Diagnosis

Mawira_J 2d

The availability of mobile phones and friendly data bundles has made access to information very easy. But how accurate is the information especially when it comes symptoms and treatments dished out on the internet?

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Googling for symptoms is a common problem I have come across at the outpatient. Most of the patients with Googled diagnosis and treatment plans most of which are very wrong and quite dangerous if the patient went ahead and self medicated according to his/ her search results.

Google is not the best place to get information about illnesses and medication; I will give you reasons why.


1. Not all Google content is written by experts.

Some content could be downright dangerous. A good example would be when the American President seemed to suggest if People ingested detergents they'd be cured of the Coronavirus. The information was wrong but still some people went ahead and took it anyway.


2. Overestimate/underestimate symptoms.

Google tends to amplify symptoms and could lead to over treatment. The opposite effect could also happen, whereby google search reassures you the symptoms aren't as serious and you don't see a doctor on time, or take a lower dose than expected.

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3. Health Anxiety.

This is an illness itself where the patient presents with excessive worry of being sick. This is a direct of too much googling which often leaves one with the impression of suffering from multiple illnesses or fatal illnesses.


4. Delay in coming to the hospital.

Patients tend to waste plenty of life saving time trying to self medicate from Google prescription. Sometimes this delay can be fatal as an illness becomes worse and could lead to loss of life.


5. Wikipedia isn't accurate.

Wikipedia is among the top 10 most visited sites on the web which makes it a source of information for many people.

However, Wikipedia is an open forum and can be edited by anyone.

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The site isn't strict with enforcing it's policies and guidelines. The contributors aren't even allowed to provide their real names, meaning there is zero accountability for any articles published or modified.

Therefore, be careful of the information you consume from the web. Google is not a doctor!

Source: opera.com
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