Sometimes Seeing Is NOT Believing; Especially When It Comes To Articles On Cancer
When you were younger, you often heard your elders telling you not to believe everything you see on the TV, but now, times have changed. In the age of the internet, everyone tells you not to believe everything you see on social media.
This is because social media consumption has gone up greatly over the past few years, which has helped connect people from miles away and is also great for information sharing. A recent study conducted by Pew Research Center showed that 72% of the American population uses social media and 73% of people head to the internet for health-related advice.
Got a Problem? Just Google It
If you come across a problem that you are unsure of, your first move is to take your phone and look for a solution on the internet. Similarly, if you feel sick, you just type in your symptoms and get a vague idea of what’s happening.
You might even fish for some helpful remedies, but have you ever wondered whether these articles you read on social media are even accurate or not? Come to think of it, how many people even fact-check what they read regarding their health?
Getting Out of Hand
Many people rely on social media to get information, but recent surveys and studies have shown that there is a lot of misinformation being spread amongst people when it comes to health and well-being. One study suggests that 86.4% of social media articles on drugs and dietary supplements circulated through WhatsApp were faulty. 27.3% of those articles were entirely false, while the rest 59.1%, were highly misleading.
The Dangers of Misinformation
Looking at the grim statistics shown by the research and survey, one might wonder the consequences of these false articles. First off, this misinformation regarding health can create an obstacle for the proper and correct information to reach its target.
Secondly, it can affect the patient’s decision-making when it comes to treatment for high-risk diseases such as cancer. Experts believe that these articles play a major role in influencing the patient into making a decision that can hinder their treatment.
This just highlights how important it is to fact-check whatever information you are getting from the internet. While misinformation is usually not considered to be that significant, when it comes to health and your well-being, even the slightest mistakes can cause serious damage.
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