The Internet – Information Overload?

Compared to women 20 years ago, we have immeasurable amounts of information available to us.   Any time we need to know something, we can walk over to our computer, or cell phone, or iPad, or whatever, and find numerous answers to our question.  I think this is wonderful, but we need to proceed carefully.  What does this do to our relationship with our healthcare provider (or auto mechanic, or anyone else we trust)?

I am 25 weeks into my pregnancy with my second child.  Before I even got pregnant this time, I made up my mind about the tests/scans/interventions that I would be willing to have.   I have “Googled” nearly every topic I can think of.  I try to be careful to read as much information as I can and to base my decisions on research rather than rhetoric; but how can I be sure? Your search results are specific to the terminology you use to frame your query. For example: by searching for information on “avoiding unnecessary prenatal testing”, you will get all of the reasons not to test, and none of the reasons to do so.  I think this is why it is so important to have a care provider that you trust.  Although I had my mind made up, I spoke with all three of my midwives to see what they had to say about the choices I was making, and their opinions mattered to me.  I trust their knowledge and experience and wanted to be sure there wasn’t something I was missing as I made important decisions.

I say all of this to caution you…sometimes we may feel a false sense of security from the “information” we have discovered and the “research” we have performed.  Don’t forget that one of the most important decisions we make in life is the decision whether or not we trust someone.  I hope that all women feel a sense of trust and respect for their care providers and that we remember that we haven’t hired Google to catch our babies…or fix our cars.

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3 thoughts on “The Internet – Information Overload?

  1. Thankfully, I have a job that grants me access to thousands of evidence based journals (which is almost just as bad, in terms of trying to sift through it). It’s too bad that access to this sort of material doesn’t come with your prenatal care! They might be afraid of what you’d find out!!

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