Despite turning to internet and smartphone applications for health information in such large numbers, teenagers told researchers that their parents are still where they go the most for information.
It is found that four out of five teenagers get health information from the internet; only 25 percent have got lot of information online. It is also found that the source of lot of information, by far, is parents, to whom 55 percent of teenagers go, followed by 32 percent relying on health classes, and 29 percent going to doctors and nurses.
For the study, researchers have included 1,156 U.S. teens between the ages of 13 and 18 and sought to discover the ways the always connected millennial generations gathers information while dealing with the range of health concerns they face.
Vicky Rideout, a media and health researcher who designed the survey said, “It shows that teenagers can be independent and empowered actors in taking care of their own health.”
During the survey, teens have reported researching everything from random pains and healthy ways to work out at the gym to depression and anxiety.
But the research also shows that they’re unsure of some of the online sources they find, and only 24 percent said that they were satisfied with search results.
The study showed that parents, nurses, doctors and health classes were far more trusted.
Ellen Wartella, a communications professor at Northwestern University said, “Half the teens who use search engines to look for health information say they usually just click on the first site that comes up, we need to focus on improving their digital literacy skills so that they can sort through the abundance of information they come across online.”
The research was presented at a Washington, D.C., conference held by Northwestern University’s Center on Media and Human Development on June 2.