Alexa, what should my baby’s temperature be? This is starting to become the norm in parenting – relying on Google to give you medical advice. While this example is pretty innocent, studies have shown that parents tend to turn to Google for answers on their children’s symptoms, before asking a medical professional. This can be harmful in a couple ways.
First, you cannot look up anything on Google without getting a mix of positive and negative experiences. You can find the best set of Bluetooth speakers ever created, with nothing but 5 stars and praise from everyone, and there is always going to be that one guy that had the worst experience of his life with those speakers. It is the same with medical a diagnosis. You are going to find examples where it was the worst case scenario, every time. This can lead to a parent becoming overly alarmed, over something that really isn’t a big deal.
Another way it can be detrimental is it decreases the value and trust we put into our physicians, nurses, and others in the medical field.
According to a new study from the American Academy of Pediatrics, parents searching the internet after the child becomes sick not only reduces their trust in trained medical professionals but it also causes a delay in treatment if parents don’t trust their doctor’s diagnosis because of what they read online.