Adult 'millennials' in the US are turning to digital methods of self-diagnosis over more traditional approaches when it comes to healthcare, according to a new report.
But data from the Millennial Mindset: The Worried Well survey showed that 37% of millennial respondents – people aged 18 to 32 - sometimes end up self-diagnosing health problems that they don't have.
This compared to 24% baby boomers (adults aged 50-68) and 26% of generation Xers (adults aged 33-49). The survey featured the opinions of 2,015 adult millennials, 508 gen Xers and 507 baby boomers and was carried out by Allidura Consumer and GSW, both part of inVentiv Health, and Harris Poll.
According to the report's authors the tendency to use 'doctor Google' can create a 'search and stress' cycle, with 44% of millennials stating that viewing health information online causes them to worry about their health. The figures are 32% for gen Xers and 24% for baby boomers.
Leigh Householder, chief innovation officer at GSW, said: “For millennials, the question isn't who can help them be healthy, but rather what can help them.
“For brand marketers to be successful in reaching this audience, they
must think about health and wellness the same way, and create solutions
that inspire millennials to experience health at any given moment and
throughout all aspects of their lives.”
Householder also pointed out the importance of mental health for this younger generation. The survey reported that 35% of millennial respondents believe seeing a therapist or psychiatrist regularly is important to good health, while the figure was 12% for baby boomers and 24% for gen Xers.
“To millennials, physical health is intricately connected with mental health,” concluded Householder.