For many of us, the first reaction to sickness is not to consult a doctor but to become one! Feeling unwell? Simple, pop a pill or just scour the internet for symptoms. Sounds familiar? If you are also one of those who often diagnose and prescribe medicines to themselves, you are not only putting yourself through the risk of misdiagnosis but also through unnecessary panic and stress. Stop trusting your health with conventional wisdom or unreliable internet results.
Join us in celebrating Independence Week and pledge to free yourself from the stress of self-examination and self-medication, and also from the risks associated with it. Stop doing these 4 common things now to get #FreedomFromSelfDiagnosis.
1) Looking up symptoms on the internet
Just having an internet connection is not good enough a qualification to be your own doctor.
As per a recent research, 75% people look up symptoms online instead of going to a doctor. Unfortunately, 80% of them end up following the wrong treatment which makes their condition worse. It’s important to understand that anyone can post content on the internet and it’s not always verified or trustworthy. So relax, your headache is not always brain tumour and your stomach ache is not cancer! But just to be sure, please visit a good doctor.
In case you are unable to visit a clinic or hospital, the reliable option is to chat with a doctor online. Don’t worry yourself sick, ask a doctor instead!
2) Taking medicines on your own or by asking around
For many of us, the go-to response for being sick is to pop a pill and hope for the best. If that doesn’t work, we tend to ask around and go with whatever friends or family recommend. However, this ‘one size fits all’ rule does not apply to healthcare. Everyone’s body is different and we are not experts of it.
The same pill that cured your friend’s fever might not suit you at all. Consult a doctor instead.
3) Depending only on home remedies
Many people try every possible combination of herbs, leaves and spices till they discover a cure. However, this neither guarantees a sure treatment, nor a defined timeline for the cure. Besides, it might not help at all if there’s an underlying serious condition, but only delay the right course of treatment. Don’t stall for long if home remedies are ineffective and get an accurate medical diagnosis promptly. You can also ask your doctor about the home remedies you can try apart from medication.
4) Taking unprescribed medicines over the counter
Buying medicines just by describing symptoms to a chemist runs more risk than you think. Apart from misdiagnosis, there is also a risk of wrong medication. You might not know the accurate dosage or power of the medicine. Also, over the counter pills sometimes don’t suit your body and might give you an allergy. Describe your symptoms to a doctor first!
A recent study conducted across India indicated that over 50% people take unprescribed, over the counter medicines.
This Independence Day, let’s choose to be more aware and informed, and enjoy the freedom to live a healthy and stress-free life.