Finding Reliable Information on the Internet

In this day in age, when people don’t know an answer to something they very quickly run to the internet to “Google It.” People no longer use dictionaries or even use the more dated Encyclopedia to find their answers. These sources are all monitored by organizations to make sure they were putting out correct information. Now, the main danger is running to the internet where literally anyone can post anything and others mistake it for being correct. When dealing with medical information it is more imperative to make sure you are getting correct information from respected sources. Below are ways to help you find reliable sources on the internet created by the National Institute of Health.

When going to a website, there is a lot of visual stimulus that grab your attention and could distracted you on where the facts are coming from. Always consider the source of the information. Most reliable websites will have an about us page that describes who is writing the information as well as where they found it. When dealing with medical information it is best to find a website that is ran by the Federal Government, a professional organization or licensed experts in the field. If there is no contact information listed on the website, read it with caution. As well as who is monitoring the information getting put out there. Is it put out by board members in the medical field or someone who has no formal education in the subject. Someone who has read a lot of blogs and compiled that information on a website is not a reliable source. So if the author is listed as Mark from Colorado that is not a good source. Medical doctors and health organizations is something you want to look for such as John Doe R.N, National Health Institute and anything that cites medical research studies. Most of that information can be found from the editorial policy.

Another trap that people get stuck in, are advertisement and fad websites. If anything promises you fast results, be skeptical. Also if you’re reading through and it seems too good to be true, they have any claims that it will cure something or uses many exclamation points, be ware. These are all tactics to help get a reader interested and excited about this too good to be true product. See who is supporting the site. Is it a drug company, an advertising company or from public funds. Also, you may want to check for dates on any documents to see if the information they are providing is current. Furthermore, another easy way to find out if a site is legit is if they ask you to find out more information before proceeding. Pay attention to the questions that are being asked and if they are asking for a lot of personal information. If a website is asking for your name, address, gender, age, or credit card information this is most likely not a website you want to get medical information from. Read the “Privacy Policy” page to learn more information.

There is a lot of misinformation on the internet and finding out what is credible and what is not is sometimes a daunting task. By following the above instructions it should help you weed out the bad from the good.

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