Technology Can Be Helpful When Timely In-Person Medical Analysis Isn’t Available, Affordable, or Possible

By Amanda Warren

In a perfect world, everyone would be able to quickly and successfully treat their own health issues.  The great thing about technology is that we are all able to research our medical concerns online.  However, there is so much information available that we may end up drawing the wrong conclusions while trying to diagnose ourselves and the ones we love.  Or we may face the other challenge: paralysis by analysis — endlessly researching without taking the quick actions that might be necessary.

For example, one of my friends had cancer about eight years ago.  After she had been through chemotherapy and radiation treatment, she went online to see how she might feel better and recover faster.  She found a link about detoxifying baths and thought that might be a good thing for her.  Since she liked baths anyway and she already had the ingredients needed, she decided to try it.  Not long after she got out of the bath, she called me and said how sick she felt.  I told her that after everything she had gone through recently, the detoxification may have simply been too much too quickly.  I told her that she should drink plenty of water, eat something light that was protein based, and then just try to rest.  I also said if she didn’t start to feel better to call me back and I would take her to the hospital.  Fortunately she started to feel better.

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Earlier this year, I had forgotten all about that friend’s experience when a different friend mentioned how great she felt after taking detoxifying baths.  I already eat cilantro a few times a week specifically for detoxifying.  Even though I never liked taking baths, this friend’s testimony made me want to give it a try.

Not long after I got out of the tub, I started feeling lousy.  A few hours later, I told my husband how I had just remembered my other friend’s bad experience with a detox bath eight years prior.  It took me about thirty-six hours before I felt like myself again.

This one anecdote highlights the fact that the human body is incredibly complex.  Because of this, not every body will feel better from the same advice and treatment – whether it’s coming directly from a medical provider, from a self-help website, or from a well-meaning friend. The same can be said for the various pollutants in our environment and our food. Why will one person succumb to a disease who has had less exposure to harmful toxins than another? We’ve all known that person who drinks heavily, smokes heavily and lives to 100.

The trend toward self-diagnosis is only amplified by the current state of healthcare in places like the United States. For most people, it is more expensive than ever, less accessible than ever and in some cases the care itself feels rushed and poor … if you can even gain access after jumping through all the hoops.

This is why it’s good to have options and redundant systems in place. Even those who have access to primary care physicians and specialists for in-person visits may not be able to make appointments when they need one. They also may not always feel comfortable with diagnoses and recommendations either, whether gathered on one’s own or from any well-intentioned friends or family. It might be wise to consider an online doctor consultation to at least give extra peace of mind before making any final (and potentially costly) decisions that the information you have gathered applies best to your unique body.

Today, the average lifestyle of a human being is more fast-paced than ever before. In this fast-paced lifestyle, many people are inclined to ignore their health, which can exacerbate any lingering symptoms that might eventually lead to a more chronic health condition. Properly assessing health issues, consulting experienced medical practitioners and/or naturopaths, while also taking into account your individual needs and finances is all possible in today’s ever-connected landscape.  But more discernment than ever is also needed so that we properly navigate our way toward the solution that works best for each of us.


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