social networking can have both a positive and a negative effect on a
person's well-being, and the frequency, quality, and purpose of the
experience will all factor into the outcome.
While frequency and duration of online social networking may have a
negative effect on mental health outcomes such as depression, a new
systematic review suggests that the relationship between online social
networking and depression is more complex.
‘For some people, social networking may serve as a resource for managing depression, thereby contributing to more positive outcomes.’
In fact, not only may how a
person uses sites such as Facebook and Twitter be more important
factors, but for some people, social networking may serve as a resource
for managing depression, thereby contributing to more positive outcomes,
suggested a review published in Cyberpsychology, Behavior, and Social Networking
.David Baker and Guillermo Perez Algorta, Lancaster University, U.K., coauthors of the article entitled "The Relationship Between Online Social Networking and Depression: A Systematic Review of Quantitative Studies,"
conclude that multiple psychological, social, behavioral, and
individual factors may all impact this complex relationship.
"As mental health professionals, it is imperative that we ask our
patients about social support systems (whether online or in real life)
as part of a routine clinical intake," says Editor-in-Chief Brenda K.
Wiederhold, Interactive Media Institute, San Diego,
California and Virtual Reality Medical Institute, Brussels, Belgium.
"Distinguishing between positive and negative online behavior, and
understanding what relieves and what exacerbates one's depression, can
be elucidated by use of a thorough intake and clinical history."