At nearing 66, I have a few experiences under my belt. Either I’ve gone through things myself or have watched friends and family on their travels. There are a lot of resources on the web, but not all of them are healthy, helpful, or necessarily well informed.
I think most of us run to the web when we have an itch or a cough and want to find out if it is just allergies or we need to get to a hospital. But some sites – especially medical and social problem sites – are actually intent on selling visitors a point of view. Many
I’ve had more than one friend conclude they had a terrible disease or disorder after researching their symptoms on the web. Never mind that health professionals have checked them thoroughly and there are no orthodox signs of the illness they fear. For some reason, those articles have grabbed their heart and imagination and internalized their fears and they simply will not believe they are actually OK.
I’m going to list some sites below that have been very helpful to me and also to those I know and trust. But before I do, I want to give three snippets of advice:
- Most sites that appear at the top of a search list are ads. Dig below those and save yourself a lot of rabbit hole diving.
- Once you find a site that appears legitimate, run a quick search on complaints/reviews about that site or service.
- Don’t believe everything on the web – whether a website,
Facebook,or other social media. I know we are all certain we are too smart to be taken. But the folks managing these environments have nothing to do BUT try to pull your eyes to their content.
I hope the following will be of use.
www.mayoclinic.org – The Mayo Clinic has a very good symptom checker and their information tends to be practical, dense, and fear-
www.webmd.com – I list WebMD second because lately it has become overrun with ads. They format their content in odd ways to adapt to all those intrusive ad blocks making it take much too long to get to the information.
www.rejectedparents.net – Started by Sheri McGregor, author of “Done With the Crying”. This is a forum for those who are coming to grips with estrangement from family members. There are some other good sites on this topic. But there are also some sites that have their own agenda and issues. This is a balanced place. Not a place to “stay”, but a safe place for non-judgmental advice and support.
www.suicidepreventionlifeline.org – Contact numbers in this site should be on every person’s refrigerator. You think you know someone – until you don’t. Lots of good information and links to others.
www.heart-valve-surgery.com – THE. BEST. SITE. on heart-valve surgery on the web. Best information, best support, best forum on this topic. If you or a loved one is facing or has faced heart-valve surgery, visit this site. You will not be disappointed. It can save you and
www.prettydarncute.com – Wonderful website designs and terrific support. Their Facebook group is awesome. Along with this site I always recommend www.onehappystudio.com for site setup. I’ve been doing websites literally since the web “went public” and sometimes you just do not want to invest the time and aggravation to set up a new site. These folks have your back.
www.snopes.com – Wondering if something you are reading is true? Try a search on this website before you share that content. They have been debunking web and social media stories for decades.
Wishing you the best of days.