Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Growing Up with “Dr. Google” – A Prescription for Stress or Empowerment? Digital Daughters Weigh In...

Your 14-year-old daughter tells you that she is worried about a dry patch on her elbow, a sore on the tip of her tongue and a bent eyelash that hurts when she blinks.  She has been Googling her ailments, and fears the worst.  You: 

A. Call the doctor immediately.
B. Tell her that you will use your search engines to diagnose her ailments and get to the bottom of them all.
C. Tell her not to worry.  Let her know that while these small ills are worth looking into, they are probably also worth a giggle, and they will surely go away.
D.  Call 911! 

For every lump, bump, rash, pain, pimple and bruise, kids today have constant access to an always on-call “Dr. Google” – an omnipresent option for self-diagnosis.  But, is the ability to search the Internet’s health sites a good thing for our adolescents – offering them helpful information, self-awareness and self-diagnoses - or are we raising a future generation of hypochondriacs?