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Who's Right? Navigating Online Health Information

Online Health Information: Who's Right?Do you find yourself overwhelmed or confused by the abundance of health information on the Internet? momsAWARE's Andrea Fabry draws from her own experience to offer these five sanity-saving strategies.

  1. Expect to be overwhelmed.

    With the massive amounts of health information readily available, it's completely natural and normal to feel overwhelmed. It doesn't mean that the information is bad or good, it simply means your brain can only process so much at one time. If your health is compromised, you have even less brain space for processing information. This is a catch-22. Taking charge of your health is a good thing, but embracing the help can be extremely challenging. There's no fix for this—just know that being overwhelmed is part of the process. And if you're overwhelmed, the truth is you may be headed in a good direction.

  2. Resist a sense of urgency.

    One of my weaknesses is to believe I have to do everything right now. I remember reading something about greens and detox and staying up most of the night coming up with a plan for the family. The transition proved to be pivotal, but easily could have waited a few more days, weeks, or even months. Give yourself room to sit with new ideas.

  3. Remember that everyone is unique.

    There is not a "one-size-fits-all" when it comes to your health. Genetics, mindset, background, and environment all play a role. What is helpful for one may not be for another. What works for one may have a different effect on another. While this makes it difficult when trying to address your own situation, it is a sanity saver to remember that there is no magic pill, diet, or procedure that will cure everything for everybody.

  4. Take a break.

    In the early years of our journey, I had to rip myself away from the computer. I was a desperate mother searching for answers. We had gone through so much loss. I wanted answers. But I realized that one more hour on the Internet was not the ultimate determining factor in recovering our health. In fact, taking a break can help you return with fresh eyes and a new perspective.

  5. Know that no one has all the answers.

    When I see someone suggesting they have the miracle supplement or diet, I see a red flag. I don't dismiss them, because I may glean something helpful, but I read with a sense of caution. I am careful to avoid putting all my organic, pastured eggs in one basket. I have come to see health as a journey rather than a destination. I am drawn to sites that offer a sense of balance.

Navigating your way through the Internet when it comes to health information is not easy. It's easy to get confused and give up. Don't give up. Muscle your way through and see if you come out healthier on the other side!

To hear an encouraging Toxic Talk conversation on this topic, see Navigating Online Information on our Radio Interviews page.

Quotes

"The ERMI mold test as well as your helpful articles and Toxic Talk Tuesday programs have helped us avoid a terrible mistake in purchasing a new home."

– Angela

"My daughter has had many blood samples taken to test for everything imaginable and her doctor just seems puzzled. Everything comes back normal."

– Anonymous

"Both of my sons went downhill quickly and coughed for months... They both lost their ability to read, had profound vision disturbances, and had phenomenal gastric issues."

– Lee

"In my moldy home if I left the wet clothes in the washer they would get musty very quickly and I'd have to re-wash... Sometimes I'd run a load, go to work, and they'd be musty when I returned that evening."

– Anonymous

"I knew it was mold, but doctors kept telling me I had anxiety. I was sitting in my office and could not remember who I was talking to, or what we were talking about."

– Brenda

"I had been struggling with headaches, head fog, breathing difficulties (unable to get a full breath), constant scalp tingling, migraines, nausea, feeling spacey/detached, and severe itchy skin."

– Anonymous

"We all suffered from headaches, hormonal body temperature fluctuations, brain fog, fatigue, difficulty breathing, thrush, rashes, and yeast infections... we vacated our home two weeks ago."

– Anonymous

"We were having a lot of health problems and had been to the doctor countless times... we had large circles of slimy greenish-black mold on the bathroom ceiling, where it had caved in a few months before."

– C.

"I was skeptical at first that these (natural cleaning) products would work, but they work better than the stuff I buy at the store! We will soon be moving to the personal care products as well!"

– Jennifer

"I started finding myself sitting on the floor in rooms of my house and not remembering how I got there, what I was doing before, or how long I had been there."

– Brenda

"I'm new at this, but today I cleaned my bathroom with baking soda and vinegar. It's much better not having those strong chemical smells afterwards."

– Anonymous

"We had some water leaks in our home... we never thought we needed to clean out and remove the floor, the ceiling, or the drywall... my two small children and I have remained constantly sick for years in this home."

– Mia

"Our family has been out of our home for 9 months due to mold... I am so scared and weak from all of this. We have lost friends; family members don't understand."

– Anonymous

"My symptoms persisted and eventually turned into lethargy and depression. At the age of 26, I required a nap every evening after work."

– Jennifer

"I've been living in a mold-infested home for 13 months... I was going CRAZY! Finally figured it out... Just a few days of recovering in a mold-free home and I feel AMAZING!!!"

– Lauren

"I have been sick for almost 6 months now and doctors were not able to figure out why. I finally put it all together after going away for vacation for a week and suddenly my symptoms were going away."

– Anonymous

"The entire time we lived in our (mold-infested) house the kitchen sponge would get musty smelling within 3-4 days. It was so strange. I had to buy a pack of sponges nearly every week."

– Anonymous

"My daughter started having digestive problems... heart palpitations... coughing episodes... muscle/joint pain... asthma/allergies... Her doctor finally advised me to check for mold in our home."

– Anonymous

"...at age 35 or 36 I started to become allergic to everything, and I got asthma at age 36... I went to doctor after doctor after doctor and was desperate for help, but nobody could help me."

– Mia

Dedication