As parents, we are constantly searching for the best research and advice to overcome the obstacles of parenthood. Whether choosing the best medicine to treat a fever, figuring out what is causing a horrible cough, or finding home remedies for sunburns, we are always reaching out to friends, family, and mommy groups to get the best tips and advice. However, not all advice is created equal. As medicine has evolved, and new research discoveries are made, our recommendations and treatment plans can change as well. In medical school, we are taught what to look for in a research study to determine what is a valid conclusion. Unfortunately today, you Google something and there are fifteen studies telling what you need to do. Yet the majority of those studies did not have large study groups or valid parameters.
It is important to understand that anything can be written on Google…there are no guidelines, no criteria, and no rules. Google is an incredible resource that allows you to get your questions answered, get inspired, and connect with people. There are great resources on the internet that are created by doctors that help educate parents on pediatric health and safe treatment options. So, how do we know that what we are reading is the same thing as what your child is experiencing, or that it is sound advice? Below are some tips to using Google safely and effectively.
Tips on the Right Way to Use Google:
- Make sure the information you are reading is validated and comes from a sound source. Check if there are footnotes.
- Have your doctor recommend websites to refer to for general health questions.
- Before treating or attempting to treat your child, or a family member by yourself, seek guidance and advice from your physician.
- Develop trust and a strong relationship with your physician and feel confident in their experiences and expertise.
- Do not hesitate to print information you find on the internet and ask your physician about it.
- Know how to assess for an emergency. There are clinical signs that I teach my clients to look for to determine if their child is stable and can wait to be seen by a doctor. If you have an emergency, or suspect you may have an emergency, always seek the help of a professional immediately.
Having a sick child can be scary and overwhelming and we don’t always have access to a pediatrician. There are so many wonderful resources out there to help educate and guide parents with their child’s health. I have the privilege of working along side some educational foundations, and their sole purpose is to help educate and guide parents. It is very important that if you are going to use a website to help answer your questions, that the information comes from a credible source. Below are some of my favorite internet resources for parents:
Forever Freckled. Of course! Forever Freckled’s mission when we created our website was to provide parents and pet lovers with the most up-to-date medical information! All of our articles are written directly from questions we receive for our audience base. We love that you feel like we are part of your family, and will continue to strive to create important and helpful content. We are always here to answer any of your questions and love hearing from you. Thank you for trusting us and watching our family grow!
KnowYourOTCS. As parents, you are in charge of your child’s health. You make decisions for everything, from choosing and giving the right over-the-counter (OTC) medicine to caring for scrapes or sniffles, to making regular appointments with your healthcare provider. KnowYourOTCs is a one stop resource for all your questions about the appropriate administration, storage, and disposal of over the counter medication. KnowYourOTCs makes it super easy for all parens to know what medications to use, and how to use them appropriately. Equally important, it educates parents on proper storage, which can prevent unwanted ingestions and save lives.
Bundoo. Bundoo.com is a physician-driven resource where expecting moms and new parents can interact directly with doctors and healthcare experts and get information they can trust. Of course, I love that all of their content is written or reviewed by doctors and healthcare experts. They also provide a private Ask A Doctor tele-health service, which comes in handy when you can’t get an appointment to see your pediatrician.
Healthychildren.org. This is my favorite resource for symptom checking and credible content on the different pediatric illness your child might be suffering from. HealthyChildren.org is the only parenting website backed by 66,000 pediatricians committed to the attainment of optimal physical, mental, and social health and well-being for all infants, children, adolescents, and young adults. Whether you’re looking for general information related to child health or for more specific guidance on parenting issues, you’ll find information regarding the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) guidelines and advice.
NFID. National Foundation for Infectious Diseases (NFID) is a non-profit organization dedicated to educating the public and healthcare professionals about the causes, prevention, and treatment of infectious diseases across the lifespan. I love the NFID because is provides parents with a resource to educate themselves on vaccinations and the different illnesses you are protecting your child against.
Remember, parenting is not one size fits all. As parents, there is no one that knows what will work for your child better than you. I created this hilarious and fun video with some other bloggers, to highlight some of the best and worst advice we have gotten.
I’m proud to take part as a blogging ambassador with the CHPA (Consumer Healthcare Products Association) Educational Foundation and KnowYourOTCs.org. This is a sponsored post! While I have received compensation from the CHPA Educational Foundation, all opinions are my own.