I can't even imagine a world where I couldn't research and ask questions endlessly about my children's health… and of course take them to see a doctor.
The horrible reality is that only those of us fortunate to be literate and have Internet access can experience the freedom of endless, reliable information and support. And even fewer can call up and book a doctor's appointment or drive a few blocks and get to a hospital.
I live in Canada and I'm thankful to have access to a public medical system with doctors and hospitals when I need them. Our system may be flawed and plagued by long wait times, but I'm grateful to have it.
And I'm also grateful for the instant information and community support I find online. It blows my mind when I think of how recently the amazing equalizer of the Internet took over.
If I have a question about my children's health or I wonder how to teach them something or how to talk about a difficult subject… I often go online.
Yes, if it's an issue that requires a doctor, I go to a medical clinic or book an appointment to see their family doctor.
My first born Julia gave us several medical scares in her first couple years and her pediatrician knew us well. But again, I didn't have to rely only on his opinion. I took the information he gave me and I went online to learn more and ask my friends questions.
When Janice sought answers to her daughters apparent facial tics, she was blessed to be able to take Olivia to a pediatrician, who ordered an EEG, which led to an appointment with a pediatric neurologist who diagnosed stereotypy.
The wonderful circle of shared information and support continued when Janice shared the diagnosis of stereotypy on our blog.
With access to medical doctors as well as information and community support online, parents are so much better equipped to understand and make better decisions for the health and happiness of their children.
I just hope and pray that more people get access to the full circle of information and medical intervention and that children everywhere get the help they need.
Children's health is at the top of every mother's mind. What's your favorite tip for raising a healthy baby? By replying, you will be entered to win an exclusive Million Moms Challenge Gift Pack, which includes an iPad2, a custom-made Million Moms Challenge pendant and a $50 donation in your name to Global Giving.
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This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Million Moms Challenge. The opinions and text are all mine. Contest runs November 14 to December 18, 2011. A random winner will be announced by December 20, 2011.