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With just a few keystrokes, we now have access to more health and medical information than ever before. Reliable medical information can help you become a more active participant in your own health care, so you can work with your doctor to make informed decisions about your health.

Unfortunately, not all information on the internet is reliable, and this extends to mental health. Some websites post inaccurate or biased medical information. Others are not up-to-date. Anyone can post health information to the web – medical professionals and non-experts alike. Choosing which websites to trust can be a challenge.

What should you look for when evaluating the quality of health information on websites? Here are some suggestions from the MedlinePlus Guide to Healthy Web Surfing, a service of the U.S. National Library of Medicine at the National Institutes of Health.

When you first visit any website, consider the source. As a general rule, websites sponsored by Federal agencies are reliable starting points.

Be especially wary visiting online mental health forums: Believing information or following advice posted by nonprofessionals regarding mental disorders and treatments can be dangerous.

Here are some credible online sites for information about mental health:

The information on this site is for informational purposes only and is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your qualified mental health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. We do not recommend or endorse any specific tests, mental health providers, products, procedures, opinions, or other information that may be mentioned on this site. Reliance on any information provided herein is solely at your own risk.

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