Social Media Engagement Among Individuals with Depression or Anxiety Disorder

Document Type


Publication Date



Poster presentation at Georgia Southern University Research Symposium 2022.


With the increasing use of the Internet and its constant shaping of our perception of realities, knowing the consumer’s social media behavior can lead to the development of health interventions based on their preferred engagement pattern. This is particularly important for people with mental health conditions such as depression or anxiety disorder who may have challenges getting support from familiar people due to the stigma associated with these conditions.


The objective of this study is to examine the patterns of social media use and its correlates, including depression or anxiety disorder.


This study combined data from 4 iterations of the Health Information National Trends Survey (HINTS) fourth cycle collected from 2017 to 2020. The total sample size for these cross-sectional surveys is 16,092. Descriptive statistics and logistic regression analyses were conducted to examine the association between depression or anxiety disorder and the dichotomous dependent variable—social media use at different levels of engagement.


Our results show that compared to individuals with no depression or anxiety disorder, people with these mental conditions are less likely to visit social media, (AOR=0.8; CI=0.64-0.93), share health information on social media (AOR=0.8; CI=0.60-0.94), join a support group for people with a similar medical condition (AOR=0.5; CI= 0.39-0.67) or watch a health-related video on YouTube (AOR=0.7; CI=0.56-0.80). Other factors associated with increased odds of watching a health-related video on YouTube are the individual’s educational level and identifying one’s race or ethnicity as Non-Hispanic Black or African Americans, Hispanics and Non-Hispanic Asians.


Social media can be a more effective tool to deliver health care to people with mental health conditions if the barriers to consumers’ use are eliminated.


Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.


Georgia Southern University Research Symposium


Statesboro, GA