There are many changes going through the healthcare industry. Regulations are getting tighter. Insurances have bigger deductibles and have more exclusionary clauses then a legal genius can figure out. There are in network and out of network providers. There are different deductibles. There are DME riders. The list goes on and on. The one thing I can say for sure is that the public is both better and worse educated then ever in history. So it is you, the individual, who is really the only one that can help you to achieve your optimal health.

With so much information on the web making a decision about what information is correct and what is not can be difficult. There are some simple rules that can be used to determine if this site is a good one for accurate information. If it looks or sounds like an advertisement, it basically is one. If the research they are talking about is not publish in a medical journal or back by a university you have wonder where it was done and how much of it is designed to give you specific results. Specific companies can give you great information but they are still trying to sell products so if you look up the website for a specific sleeping medication it will give you accurate information about side effects and how to take it but it is still designed to sell you that medication.

To start if you are looking for information about a condition or medication where can you look for the most reliable information? There are many great websites I have used in the past to gain medical information especially about conditions I may not have dealt with before. For general knowledge I like:

Yahoo Health
National Institute on Health

There is also information on your health insurance company’s web site that you can explore. There are multiple medical magazines online for specific issues. I write about sleep and respiratory therapy. The magazines I go to that do not cost anything (I subscribe to professional journals also but that is above what the average person should have to do). Some of the ones I look at:

Advance for Sleep
Sleep Review Magazine

Then there are the professional organizations and the organizations for individual conditions. These are great support for those with the issue because they can keep you informed of research and changes in treatment, allow you to communicate with others who have your conditions and to learn the basics about the condition so you know what to expect. If you would like me to find one for you just e-mail m e and I will be happy to help. I am going to attach here some of the ones we use for sleep disorders.

American Sleep Apnea Association , this organization has local support groups for people affected by sleep disorders.

Restless Leg Syndrome foundation Great information for people with restless legs or period limb movement disorders

National Sleep Foundation Is a government run study on sleep and all the issues pertaining to it. It has great information about drowsy driving, jet lag, plus all the sleep conditions out there.

The web has become a great place to access information and people. This is a great tool. It is still only one tool. In my next article we will talk about taking this information and working with your doctor to make a plan to guide you to your best health.

Author's Bio: 

Amy Korn-Reavis, RRT, RPSGT has been in the respiratory field for over twenty years. She has worked in all areas and is currently focusing on sleep and how to help the community feel better by sleeping better. She is the manager of Emery Sleep Solutions an independent testing facility located in Apopka, Florida. She is also the coordinator of A.W.A.K.E. Orlando a support group for people with sleep disorders If you have any questions about sleep or are looking for someone to speak at your community function she can be reached at