We are surrounded by so much information. At our fingertips are devices that hold endless amounts of data, articles, facts, suggestions, tools, resources, photos, videos and instruction guides. I remember that my Mom had ordered one of those medical books from a paid advertising program on television. When we had an ailment, we would read up on the symptoms, the cause and the treatment options. It was handy and fun for us to do.
Gone are the days of having one single book or having to go to the library to look up stuff in an encyclopedia. Mainly, research is now done with a click of a button. With all of this information; however, we can still feel lost and unclear.
I was diagnosed with a disease called Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis, in 2002. Since the doctor only provided basic information about it, I began researching this condition and gathering all of the facts that I could. It was important for me to know what I was dealing with and have a plan of attack. As recent as this winter, my thyroid antibodies labs came back at 562 when it is apparently supposed to be fewer than 35 units of measure.
It said that Hashimoto’s causes weight gain, fatigue, paleness or puffiness of the face, joint and muscle pain, cold intolerance, sluggish metabolism, memory problems, hair loss or thinning brittle hair, depression, slowed heart rate, digestive issues, female issues and more. How attractive! No wonder I feel like a mess at times; including today.
Having also researched solutions, treatments, tips and suggestions for how to manage the issue, the information was just as endless. In the end, though, having so much information can be too overwhelming. Do this, do that. Don’t do this, don’t do that. Try this, try that. Take this, take that. Don’t take this, don’t take that. When does the advice end?
It is the same with nutrition advice, prescription advice, exercise advice, career advice, relationship advice, parenting advice, health advice, financial advice and more. How do we keep up and how to we sift through the continuous pile of information?
When faced with dealing with any life or health concern, it makes sense that we do some digging on the Internet. The problem, though, is that it will bring up both sides of every issue. We will often pull up conflicting, contradictory or opposite data, in the same search. Which one do we follow?
Having done research on health matters, affecting myself or my family for years, for everything from cancer, to thyroid problems, to knee surgery, to gallstones to appendicitis to bulging discs to muscle injuries to broken bones to pulled muscles to pregnancy and more, there is a common thread. We can be inundated with misleading, incomplete or misinformed data.
On the other hand, we have become much more involved in matters that we once left to professionals. Now, instead of going to counselling, many read about how to resolve an issue on their own. We research and treat minor medical issues, by looking up the natural, home remedies, instead of going to the doctor. Many research how to invest in financial markets, where financial planners used to do all the work. Many buy or sell their own home, where real estate agents used to be the norm, and so on.
We have become our own experts, in many ways, and we are more knowledgeable than ever before. We must; however, keep in mind that if something is not being resolved, working, or getting better, that it is time to let the paid professionals do their thing. It is helpful to be informed, be involved and be armed with as much information as possible, but we must ensure that the information is credible, useful and not harmful.
Knowing about all of the problems that Hashimoto’s disease can cause and the fact that I continue to struggle with the symptoms and the roller coaster of emotions, energy levels and effects that follow, I am prepared to take it to the experts, once again. Time to enlist the team of people who can support me in feeling healthier; just taking a little thyroid pill every morning is not doing the trick.
I am off to try to attempt to tame this mop of dry hair, wipe the mascara from under my eyes, drag myself out of bed, after my early morning nap (following a full night’s sleep), and ensure that I put on bucket loads of cream on my dry skin. Maybe this will reverse my less than sunny disposition today.
Are you dealing with anything that is holding you back? Are you struggling with an addiction, an issue or a concern that is impacting your life in a negative way? Is there anything that you need, where enlisting the experts can assist you? It might be worth it, to at least look into it…
‘We are all healers who can reach out and offer health, and we are all patients in constant need of help.’ ~ Henri Nouwen