I know that on several StackExchange sites (e.g Martial Arts and Personal Productivity), medical questions are closed as off-topic. I think this is because for these types of questions incorrect advice can have severe consequences.

Should we place a ban on medical questions here? Or are there situations where they would be acceptable?

And if we ban them, where do we draw the line? Some example questions we've allowed so far:

Note that I've placed the following question on hold, since at least for me it crosses a line.

If we decide here that we will allow this question I will reopen it.

  • 1
    I agree with putting that tea-tree tooth-brushing question on hold. I don't see any way in which sustainability expertise helps to answer it.
    – 410 gone
    Apr 30, 2015 at 7:52

3 Answers 3


(Adding a second answer unrelated to my earlier one)

If the major component of the question is not about sustainability they should be moved to Health.SE.


Anyone can ask anything. Especially in the area of health milions of claims fly across the internet. I suspect your question is partly influenced by the fear that we will get inundated by questions that have little substance. I know my answer is ;-)

I suggest we judge these questions on a similar basis like Skeptics.SE:
Do they have an actual claim? If not, leave a comment and/or flag them as "Unclear what you are asking".

For those questions that do have a claim, but where the answer seems contentious, suggest that the OP moves the question to Skeptics.SE ("but do not cross-post"). The community over there is very strict on references versus opinions.


Everything we do, interact with, etc... could have an health impact.

How do you define a medical question? It all depends on the perspective and level of "interaction"..... Questions like: should I drink this or that? Should I paint the walls with latex paint (will my lungs be fine) ? Should I eat carrots from Spain? etc, etc, etc....

That being said, FORGET about even thinking of trying to catalog a question with being "medical" or not, because you simply can not make that separation.....

For me, I answer to you with a "NO"

  • Thank you for your answer. Would you consider a question like "How do I get rid of athlete's feet?" for example, also to be on-topic here? Even if there is no clear link to sustainability?
    – THelper
    May 12, 2015 at 7:08

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