Westside Behavioral Care, Inc. | Article

Social Networking and Mental Health

Can Psychological Health symptoms be found on Social Networking sites?

A recently published study in the Psychiatry Research journal conducted by researchers at the University of Missouri indicates that mental health wellness or illness can present itself in the profiles of social networking platforms.

Social networking has become one of the largest means of communication and socialization. Study leader Elizabeth Martin, doctoral student in MU's psychological science department in the College of Arts and Science, said:

"Therapists could possibly use social media activity to create a more complete clinical picture of a patient. The beauty of social media activity as a tool in psychological diagnosis is that it removes some of the problems associated with patients' self-reporting.

For example, questionnaires often depend on a person's memory, which may or may not be accurate. By asking patients to share their Facebook activity, we were able to see how they expressed themselves naturally. Even the parts of their Facebook activities that they chose to conceal exposed information about their psychological state."