Since the outbreak of COVID-19, internet searches for health ailments have skyrocketed. What symptoms are Irish people concerned about the most?

Lenstore has analyzed over 100 common health ailments to reveal Europe’s most searched for symptoms.

With 12,000 searches per month, diarrhea is Ireland’s most searched for symptom. This symptom is also the most commonly searched for ailment in the world.

These are Ireland’s top 10 most Googled health symptoms:

1. Diarrhea
2. Anxiety
3. Insomnia
4. Vertigo
5. Sore Throat
6. Constipation
7. Migraine
8. Chills
9. Weight Loss
10.Eye Twitch

While self-diagnosing via Google is usually not recommended, there can be advantages and disadvantages to looking up your symptoms on the internet, according to Dr Chun Tang of Pall Mall Medical.

Looking up a worrying symptom online can help patients decide to speak to a doctor about their ailment and give information for self-care and guidance. Unfortunately there is a lot of unreliable information on the internet so it is important to search for evidence-based, quality sources of information.

However, it can be difficult for the general public to understand which websites are reliable.  Also, websites written for trained medical personnel may cause more confusion for those not medically trained.

Here is some advice before you Google your symptoms:

1. Only use recognized and reliable websites.

2. Make sure information is not outdated or irrelevant geographically.

3. Ensure a medical professional is consulted as a result – whether a pharmacist for minor symptoms or a nurse or doctor for persisting and serious symptoms.

4. Dr Google is there to assist and help, but should not replace your doctor.

5. Use a variety of pages to get a different perspective and to understand the information better, but speak to a doctor for further clarification.

6. Google is a great tool to use before seeing your doctor, or going for tests or procedures. Do some bedtime reading before your appointment so that you have some questions to ask on the day.