Social networks: a new source of psychological stress or a way to enhance self-esteem? Negative and positive implications in bronchial asthma

Division of Respiratory and Allergic Diseases, Department of Respiratory Diseases, High Speciality Hospital A. Cardarelli, Napoli, Italy.
Journal of investigational allergology & clinical immunology: official organ of the International Association of Asthmology (INTERASMA) and Sociedad Latinoamericana de Alergia e Inmunología (Impact Factor: 2.6). 10/2012; 22(6):402-5.
Source: PubMed


The Internet and, in particular, social networks are an increasingly important part of daily life for both adolescents and adults who maintain a virtual relationship with others sharing interests and goals. Very often, they disclose more about themselves online than they do in person. However, cyberbullying and cyberostracism can be problematic for adolescents and sensitive individuals, who might be negatively affected by social networks. Some studies have shown an increased risk of depression, whereas others suggest beneficial effects through enhanced communication, social connection, and self-esteem. Bronchial asthma is an increasingly frequent disease in the industrialized world, and psychological implications play a role in increasing or in reducing its severity. One year after the case report of an asthma exacerbation that may have been triggered by Facebook, it seems reasonable to analyze the effects of social networks on bronchial asthma.

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    • "Ostracism, defined as being ignored or excluded, has been found to directly threaten the psychological need to belong (Williams & Nida, 2011). A derivative of the term, cyberostracism, has been coined to describe the sense of exclusion that can sometimes occur in online social environments (D'Amato et al., 2012). This concept is based on the belief that being excluded, rejected, or ignored in these environments can be just as hurtful as the equivalent in offline encounters (Gonsalkorale & Williams, 2007; Zadro, Williams, & Richardson, 2004). "
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