#1 Place Health Advice is Shared … and why we should be concerned

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I see it in my news-feed on Facebook, through twitter and in my inbox.  A constant barrage of parenting advise.  Some from media sources such as Parenting Magazine, organizations such as Zero to Three and American Academy of pediatrics, others from well meaning professionals or parents who have blogs, and last but not least friends and family.

Health information services

In most cases these are labeled appropriately, whether is is research or opinion and I am able, as discerning adult to pick and choose what I pay attention to.  BUT there are plenty of people asking advise, not of their health professionals on issues such as breast feeding help, but to the blanket of social media and taking it as Gold.  Instead of taking advise from a doctor that knows your medical history, or even close friends and family that have a true connection to you and your life, people are throwing their questions out there to any and everyone to weigh in.  This becomes more and more concerning because not all advise is created equal.

Health advise is coming in all shapes and sizes too, what may not seem related to health in parenting blogs is often inner related.  Discipline tips, media monitoring, screen time debates are all related to the health of our children, but these are often discussed with no research backing.  Larger debates are happening around vaccinations, first food introduction and allergies all based on experience, which is valid, but may not work for every individual.  As a parent myself it is difficult to not get sucked into some of these well meaning topics, but as a child development and public health professional I am cautious and often concerned about the information being shared.

baby washing her face

Here are some great places to seek information if choosing not to go to a professional for help:

https://www.healthychildren.org/English/Pages/default.aspx

http://kidshealth.org/

Best tip is to be mindful, it effects the most important people in your life: your children

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5 thoughts on “#1 Place Health Advice is Shared … and why we should be concerned

  1. Thank you for the links to these sources and for writing on this topic. I was actually reading this morning about tv shows such as Dr. Oz, The Doctors and how some of his health claims are found not to be true according to research conducted. There are a lot of people watching these shows so is important to educate the public to pay attention to the source of those claims.

  2. Thanks for the great post , there are plenty of people asking advise, not of their health professionals on serious health issues and some of them are being mislead by non professionals .

  3. Nice post. I liked the appropriate choice of first image which captured the reader. I thought the post made a single but clear point, short and just right for possible parenting audiences. I think you make a great point about the possible concerns around internet-derived health advice.

  4. You bring up a very good point here regarding the validity of the influx of information that is now available to us through social media and the like. After reading your post I am sitting with the question of how to decipher the information presented to us, especially if you are looking for information that is not mainstream? What if you are looking for alternative solutions/advice that is outside the walls of the Western/biomedical world? I appreciate that social media and the internet as a whole is allowing and encouraging us to live in a more dimensional world in which there is more than one truth.

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