Most of us are used to finding information on the Internet before we acquire the services of a professional service provider. But this could be a very dangerous plan of action.
Looking up medical advice on the internet may work well when acquiring basic information, but one needs to exercise caution when taking medical advice from an Internet resource. Not all information provided online is medically sound and not all advice is appropriate for everyone.
You are unique and so are the conditions your body is subjected to. Nobody else has the same combination of stress, prescribed medication, habitual movement patterns, squeaky car seats or super comfy couches that you have.
Despite their best intentions, your friends, family and all the strangers on the internet combined, cannot give you sound advice on addressing problematic symptoms if they haven’t done a professional and comprehensive assessment first. Your physiotherapist will usually ask you a number of questions before starting any treatment so they can ensure that they do not confuse a fracture for a frozen shoulder or referred pain for plantar faciitis. Conditions often overlap in their signs and symptoms, making it impossible to diagnose yourself or the person who may be reading your internet blog, without a thorough assessment.
However good someone’s intentions are what happens when the condition doesn’t respond? What happens if it gets worse?
Nobody wants to be responsible when something goes wrong, but we easily overlook that possibility when dishing out personal experiences as medical advice or taking a stranger’s online word for how to manage by ourselves.
Many of my patients want to arrive prepared for their initial appointments and I appreciate that. An interested patient is very likely to take responsibility for their condition which typically makes it quicker to get to the bottom of it all.
Unfortunately, I also see patients who have been convinced of a certain condition or treatment that they learned about on the internet, hindering them from getting the most from their physio appointment and closing them off to considering alternatives recommended by their trained medical practitioner.
Be extremely cautious in taking online medical advice from a stranger no matter how qualified this person may seem. By all means, use the internet to gain a basic understanding of your symptoms, but let your qualified physiotherapist perform a deeper analysis and then embrace their solution as it is based on for your unique set of circumstances and therefore more likely to provide the desired results.
Your health and physical wellbeing should be a priority deserving of quality care. Make sure to discuss any concerns you may have directly with your preferred physiotherapist, so that you can receive the appropriate guidance for your unique situation.
082 334 9028
Valley Centre Offices
396 Jan Smuts Avenue
(Convenient parking off Marian Road, behind the centre, up the ramp)
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