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How To Research Mental Health Topics

Whether you are trying to better understand your own mental health, or you are trying to understand someone else’s mental health, it’s important to understand how to conduct proper research. 

The internet is riddled with mental health information (and misinformation), mental health forums, videos, and expressions of personal experiences. Knowing how to navigate it all is a truly valuable skill to have!

In this article, we’ll review the best practices for navigating the web, including informational resources like BetterHelp, when it comes to mental health talk. 

Verified Websites for Mental Health

When you type in buzz words related to mental health on the internet, you’ll likely get a slew of information, a lot of which can be clickbait. 

When you are looking for information about mental health online, make sure the websites you are visiting are verified.

For example, when a website ends in .gov, you know that it is a government-run website and contains official, verified information or resources.

Likewise, if there is an icon of a small lock next to the URL, that means that the website is secure and that you are visiting a website that will keep your information private.

Professional mental health specialists like those at BetterHelp are reliable sources for mental health information and can help you uncover what you need to know about your mental wellness practices and your mental health struggles. 

Avoid Self-Diagnosing

When you read widely on the internet, you might feel equipped to self-diagnose your own mental health issues. That can be a dangerous choice to make. 

For example, if you convince yourself that you are experiencing a particular mental health problem, you might try to fix it using advice and guidance from unverified sources. Down the road, after seeing a professional, you might discover that you are struggling with something else entirely. 

Self-diagnosing can also lead to additional anxiety. The internet is full of horror stories and worst-case scenarios when it comes to mental health. 

Try to avoid reading details about exceptionally bad experiences, as they can be tragic and depressing, especially to someone seeking guidance. 

Other Options

Books can also be an incredible resource for researching mental health. 

Within the “self-help” category, there are plenty of books that outline the experiences of mental health professionals with tips for how to increase your mental wellness. 

Formal diagnosis tools, research studies, and similar resources can help you understand the inner workings of a mind with mental illness. 

Self-help and wellness books, biographies, etc., may be better choices if you’re looking to get a better understanding of how it feels to live with and manage mental illness symptoms.

No matter what, be sure your search matches your end goal, otherwise, you may find yourself overwhelmed by the sheer amount of material out there.

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