How to stop googling symptoms

How to stop googling symptoms

Googling medical symptoms is a common behavior nowadays. A study found that 89 percent of people have used the internet to look up health information, and nearly two-thirds of those said they had Googled their symptoms before seeking medical care.

There are many reasons why people turn to Google instead of (or in addition to) visiting their doctor. Maybe they’re embarrassed about their symptoms or worry that their doctor will think they’re overreacting. They may be trying to diagnose a less serious condition to save money on a trip to the ER. Or maybe they don’t have easy access to healthcare.

Whatever the reason, it’s important to remember that self-diagnosing via Google is not always accurate or helpful. It can often lead to anxiety and stress, especially if you come across scaremongering articles or forums filled with horror stories.

The Dangers of Googling Symptoms

Too often, people rely on Google to diagnose their symptoms. This can be extremely dangerous, as many symptoms can point to various illnesses. Google is not a medical professional and should not be used as one. In this article, we’ll explore the dangers of googling symptoms.

It can lead to anxiety and unnecessary worry

One of the dangers of googling symptoms is that it can lead to anxiety and unnecessary worry. It’s important to remember that most people with a specific symptom don’t have a serious underlying medical condition.

Most headaches are benign and self-treatable. For example, if you search for “headache” on Google, the top results are “migraine” and “tension headache.” While these conditions can be serious, the vast majority of headaches are not caused by these conditions.

If you’re concerned about a symptom, it’s always best to talk to your doctor. They can help you determine whether the symptom is due to a serious condition.

It can give you false information

Anyone can put anything they want on the internet, and sometimes people do. Search engines are very good at finding websites. Still, they could be better at deciding if the information on those websites is accurate, up-to-date, or even applicable to your particular situation.

That means that when you search for information about your symptoms, you might find outdated or even misinformation — outright wrong information. This can lead you to believe you have a condition you don’t actually have or to worry needlessly about a condition that is not serious. In either case, googling your symptoms will not likely give you the peace of mind you’re looking for.

It can lead to self-diagnosis

We’ve all done googling health symptoms at one point or another. You have a weird pain in your side, and before you know it, you’ve diagnosed yourself with a kidney infection—or worse.

While it’s tempting to turn to Dr. Google when feeling under the weather, resist the urge. Self-diagnosing your symptoms can lead to a lot of unnecessary anxiety—and in some cases, it can be downright dangerous.

Here are four reasons to think twice before googling your health symptoms.

  1. You could end up with a misdiagnosis.
  2. When you search for information about your symptoms online, you’re likely to find much inaccurate information. This can lead to self-diagnosis, which may not be accurate. Furthermore, self-diagnosis can lead to unnecessary anxiety about your health.
  3. You could delay getting proper treatment.
  4. If you self-diagnose and end up being wrong, you could delay getting proper treatment for a serious condition. This could be dangerous or even life-threatening in some cases.
  5. You could end up Googling all night long.
  6. Once you start googling your symptoms, it can be hard to stop. Before you know it, you’ve spent hours down the rabbit hole of health information—and accomplished nothing but raising your anxiety levels!
  7. There are better ways to get information about your symptoms.
  8. If you’re concerned about your health and want to learn more about your symptoms, there are better ways to get accurate information than by Googling them. Talk to your doctor or another trusted healthcare professional.
  9. When to Stop Googling Symptoms.
  10. We all want to be our advocates and health detectives, but there is such a thing as too much Googling. Most of us have been there- you have a weird rash, and instead of making an appointment with a dermatologist, you spend hours googling pictures of skin conditions. Or you’ve been feeling fatigued and decided to forgo a trip to the doctor for a late-night search session on WebMD.
  11. If your symptoms are severe.
  12. It is important to seek medical attention immediately if your symptoms are severe, such as those associated with a heart attack or stroke. These symptoms require professional medical attention and should not be diagnosed using Google. Go to the nearest emergency room or call 911.
  13. If you can’t find a credible source.
  14. Symptoms can be tricky. They can come on suddenly or gradually, be mild or severe, be a sign of a serious illness or be completely benign. No wonder people turn to the internet for answers about what might be wrong. According to a 2017 Pew Research study, 66 percent of U.S. adults say they’ve used the internet to figure out what medical condition they or someone else might have. While this is undeniably useful, it can also be problematic. One issue is that not all information on the internet is accurate. A lot of it is flat-out wrong. Even if the information is correct, it may not apply to your situation. So how can you tell when to stop googling and consult a health care professional? Here are four times when it’s time to close your laptop and make an appointment with your doctor.
  15. If you’ve been Googling for hours and are still waiting for results.
  16. If you’ve been Googling for hours with no results, it might be time to stop. A study published in the British Medical Journal found that people who self-diagnosed using Google were wrong just as often as those who used other methods, like going to the doctor. The authors concluded that “engaging in extended searches for information about their health symptoms is unlikely to lead patients to more accurate conclusions.”
  17. How to Stop Googling Symptoms.
  18. We’ve all been there before. You have a weird pain in your side, and before you know it, you’re deep down the rabbit hole of Google searches, looking up every possible permutation of what could be wrong with you. We’re here to tell you to stop. Just stop. Could you not do it?
  19. Delete your search history.

One of the best ways to stop googling symptoms is to delete your search history. This will prevent you from being able to access your previous searches, and it will also make it more difficult for you to find new information about your symptoms. To delete your search history, follow these steps:

  1. Open the Google app on your phone or tablet.
  2. Tap the three lines in the upper left corner of the screen.
  3. Tap “History.”
  4. Tap “Clear history.”
  5. Tap “OK.”

Deleting your search history is a good first step, but more is needed. You must also be more mindful of how you use Google and other search engines.

Take a break from the internet

We’ve all been there – you have a headache, a weird rash, or some other symptom, and instead of consulting a doctor, you head to Dr. Google. But before you start your search, you should keep a few things in mind.

First, remember that not all information on the internet is accurate. Anyone can write anything they want and put it online, regardless of whether or not it’s true. So take everything you read with a grain of salt.

Second, keep in mind that self-diagnosing can be dangerous. Many symptoms can be signs of both minor and serious conditions, so it’s always best to avoid caution and see a doctor if you’re concerned.

And finally, if you find yourself compulsively Googling your symptoms (or spent hours reading about potential diagnoses on message boards), it might be time to take a break from the internet. Searching for answers online can lead to more anxiety and paranoia, so step away from the computer and take a deep breath. Odds are, everything is going to be just fine.

Talk to a doctor or medical professional

Googling your symptoms is one of the easiest and quickest ways to get answers to your health questions. But it’s also one of the least reliable. Search engines are designed to give you the most popular results for your query, not necessarily the most accurate ones. And regarding health information, popularity doesn’t necessarily equate to accuracy.

Second, remember that you are not a doctor. Google cannot diagnose you. Only a medical professional can do that. If you’re concerned about your symptoms, the best thing to do is make an appointment with your doctor or another medical professional. They will be able to ask you specific questions about your symptoms and give you an accurate diagnosis.

And finally, don’t forget that there is a lot of misinformation on the internet. Not everything you read is true. So if you do decide to Google your symptoms, be sure to read from reputable sources only. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the World Health Organization (WHO) are good examples of reputable sources of health information.