I have a question regarding error bars. I understand that error bars (EBs) constructed with 1 standard deviation (SD) present different things about the population than EBs constructed with 95% confidence intervals (CI). Namely, EBs with SD show the spread (or dispersion) of the variable's actual values, while EBs with CI show the range that the actual mean should most likely fall within.
My data include a variable, the number (count) of times a person visits the doctor per year. The mean visit number is 3 and the SD is 5, while the confidence interval is 2.5 to 3.5. Is it inherently wrong to show the EBs based on SD since it would extend to negative values (i.e., 3-5 = -2)? Does it violate any assumption?
If I draw the bar graph showing mean 3 and EBs based on 1 SD, the EBs will range from 0 to 8, can I still claim that ~68% of values fall within 0 to 8, or because it is right skewed and the supposed lower EBs largely reaches the negative, this no longer holds? If so, how can I interpret the 0 to 8 which truncates the negative?