You probably have been checking a Ben’s Friends community site for a while. Maybe you have been feeling some symptoms and our site came out on your online search.  

Or maybe you have been diagnosed with the condition and reading other patients’ experiences is extremely helpful for you. Or perhaps you’re a relative or a caregiver looking for information that could help improve your loved one’s condition.

We are happy to know that many people are benefiting from our sites simply by browsing the posts of members. In fact, this is one of the reasons why posts in our communities are public, meaning they can be viewed even without logging in. 

However, interacting with other members can make a huge difference. Below are some tips on how to really benefit from the Ben’s Friends communities.

1. Why create an account?

Posts on the different Ben’s Friends communities can be read by anyone on the internet. You can browse through the different topics and find most of the information you’re looking for but there are many things you won’t be able to do unless you create an account. These include:

Making your own posts. Although you’re able to find useful information just by reading other members’ posts, you might still have a lot of questions in your mind. Either you want to start a new topic to talk about them in detail or you want to reply to a comment on a thread. These won’t be possible unless you create a new user account.

Viewing other members’ profiles. Member profiles include information about the country or region they are from, whether they are a patient or a caregiver, and details about their disease and treatments. Maybe you came across an interesting post and you want to learn more about the member. Or maybe you’re looking for members who are from the same country as you. Having a user account allows you to see other member profiles and find information that may be relevant.  

Sending private messages. Aside from being able to post publicly and commenting on a thread, having a user account also allows you to send private messages both to other members and moderators. In case you want to discuss a topic only with a specific person, this is possible by sending private messages when you have created your account.

2. Browse posts before creating a new one

Especially in communities that have been founded years ago, there are chances that somebody has already posted something related to what you want to ask. So instead of asking questions right away, browse through the different posts first. 

Our amazing search engine can help you to easily find the information you need. Just click on the magnifying glass located at the upper right corner of the forum page, enter some keywords and you’ll have all the posts that contain those words either on the title or on the thread.

You might already be able to find some answers after browsing through existing posts. And if you still need some information, you’d be able to frame the questions better because of what you already know. 

3. Post in the right category

Posts on Ben’s Friends patient forums are organized into different categories. We have the Welcome category wherein new members can introduce themselves to the group. 

We also have the Symptoms and Treatments category where members can post about the different symptoms they experience, the treatments that either have helped or they are researching about, and recommendations of doctors, physicians, and clinics. 

The General category, on the other hand, is mainly for topics that don’t fall under the previous ones although the different topics here are also organized into subcategories. 

Ensuring that your post is under the right category helps others to easily find the information they are looking for. Your moderator can help if you are wondering where your post belongs or trying to move your post.

4. Reply to a previous post

Existing threads not only have a wealth of information, they have also already gained the attention of people who are concerned about the topics they revolve around. This also means that those who have commented on each of those posts will receive a notification whenever somebody posts another comment. 

This can help you easily get in touch with people who might be of help to you. Just make sure that the member who made the post has already received enough replies and your comment would not steer the conversation away from the topics or questions raised by the member who made the post.

Also, take note that there are members who have long changed email addresses and no longer check notifications from the community. This is especially true for very old posts. So while many members might have commented, not getting a reply is also a possibility.

So, considering these benefits mentioned above, we hope that you create an account and start posting and communicating with other members. Here’s the list of our communities and find the one for your condition.