Updated on 21st December, 2016
Earlier, we had a cough or cold, we would visit a doc or take a tablet we have been prescribed previously. These days, a minor fever and we are all googling the symptoms to know what it could be. Everyone has become a doctor. Everyone has started self-diagnosis. The information explosion online is more or less responsible for this behavior.
I am sure it irks the doctors that their patients are well able to conduct self-diagnosis and talk knowledgeably. Do not get me wrong. It is good to be aware of your body and your need to understand it. But, may be, somewhere down the line, the information is making us more self-reliant and less trusting of our doctors. Saves us from bad ones but when we actually need treatment, it might end up harming us. It would do us good to remember that not all that information is right and pertinent.
Let me just recount instances when I have obsessively self-diagnosed myself.
- Irrationally, I have always been convinced that I have PCOS/PCOD all because of the facial hair. I did visit a gyneac for this!!
- Again at some point of time, I started taking too many fluids and visiting the washroom too many times. My mum was staying with me at that time so she asked me if I have developed diabetes. I suddenly became so conscious that I reduced the intake of fluids!! And, started to search for other symptoms of diabetes.
- I have done this multiple number of times like when I wanted to find out whether rheumatoid arthritis was genetic or when retina detachment was diagnosed in my eyes.
Thankfully, either of the time I did not really land up with the doctor but it is a serious habit which can have long term implications if it becomes an obsession.