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Types of social support associated with depression in the UK adult population

Joy Soo 1, TAN Soo Yin 1*, YANG Keming 2

Abstract

Many well-established sociological studies pertaining to the salubrious link between social relations and mental health have been published. In particular, numerous researchers address the issue of how social isolation and lack of family support and social ties can adversely affect one’s mental well-being. In this paper, we seek to identify and explore the relationships between people who were clinically diagnosed with depression and the aspects of their social environment, namely their social and family circumstances in the UK adult population. One hundred and ten blogs mentioning depression as their main condition were selected from a mental health support website, Time-to-Change, for analysis. As not many studies have analysed such narratives, we expected the analysis to provide a fresher and deeper understanding of the experiences of those afflicted with depression. We observed that there is a consistent discourse emphasising the importance of social support from close loved ones, in particular friends and family members. There is evidence that social circumstances can be mediating factors in depression.

Keywords

Depression; Social relations; Blogs; Content analysis

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.18063/esp.v0.i0.810
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