Problems with self-help questions: As far as I can tell, there are two main problems with self-help questions.
- There are concerns about providing clinical advice where someone should be seeking the services of appropriately trained health practitioner.
- Such questions tend to be too specific to an individual's situation, and thus such questions tend not to create useful ongoing resources for the internet.
Goals of the site: I also think there are several goals for this site that should encourage the question asker or others to try to convert self-help questions that would otherwise be closed into useful questions for the site.
- It's good to be welcoming and friendly to new users
- We want to grow the site in terms of number of users, visitors, and questions
- Self-help questions can often be edited into general questions. And answers to the general question may still be useful to the person who asked the question.
This push I think is consistent with the recent push on the StackExchange network to make question closing more constructive, and in general to be more friendly to new users.
Solution: Thus, I think a good solution where someone asks a "self-help" question is to edit
Meta Question: So, I thought be useful to have a meta-page that discussed strategies for editing questions into general useful questions for the site.
What are general strategies for converting "self-help" questions into useful general question?