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Connecting with Ourselves and Others Online: Psychological Aspects of Online Health Communication

Connecting with Ourselves and Others Online: Psychological Aspects of Online Health Communication
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Author(s): Jan-Are K. Johnsen (Norwegian Centre for Telemedicine, University Hospital of North Norway, Norway)
Copyright: 2009
Pages: 21
Source title: Patient-Centered E-Health
Source Author(s)/Editor(s): E. Vance Wilson (Arizona State University, USA)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-60566-016-5.ch003

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Abstract

In this chapter, we look at some fundamental aspects of communicating about ourselves and our health through technology. In particular, we examine how the social psychological theories of self-presentation and self-regulation might be applied to online health-communication. It is argued that the specific qualities of text-based communication might have unique benefits for health-communication through the interplay between the writing process and the concerns posed by health-issues. An understanding of how psychological processes are connected with online health communication is believed to be fundamental in understanding trends within self-help and user-driven health communication, and to predict possible outcomes of such behavior. Also, this knowledge might inform the design and development of patient-centered solutions for health-communication and heath-service delivery.

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