Posted in Health, news, Social Media

Social Media Posts Can Indicate Medical Conditions

For years we’ve been hearing stories of children being diagnosed with brain tumors or liver disorders based on followers viewing their picture on social media and alerting parents to suspicious findings.  Now a study, published in PLOS One, finds 21 different medical conditions to be revealed based on the vocabulary people use when posting on their timeline.

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Penn State and Stony Brook medical researchers reviewed thousands of Facebook status updates and found certain key words surface more often with those having specific conditions.

 

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image from: https://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0215476

 

For Diabetes, for examples, key words included: pray, family, blessed, very, thank, thankful, doctor, blood, hospital

For Sexually Transmitted Illnesses, there were many expletives as well as the terms cry, scream, away, guess, wow and babe

For Drug Abuse, there were many expletives as well as well as the terms nobody, everybody, stop, call, text and bored

For High Blood Pressure, terms that commonly surfaced included doctor, blood, hospital, mother, good, peace, rip. 

MedicalXpress reports:

Some of the Facebook data that was found to be more predictive than demographic data seemed intuitive. For example, “drink” and “bottle” were shown to be more predictive of alcohol abuse. However, others weren’t as easy. For example, the people that most often mentioned religious language like “God” or “pray” in their posts were 15 times more likely to have diabetes than those who used these terms the least. Additionally, words expressing hostility—like “dumb” and some expletives— served as indicators of drug abuse and psychoses.
“Our digital language captures powerful aspects of our lives that are likely quite different from what is captured through traditional medical data,” said the study’s senior author Andrew Schwartz, Ph.D., a visiting assistant professor at Penn in Computer and Information Science, and an assistant professor of Computer Science at Stony Brook University. “Many studies have now shown a link between language patterns and specific disease, such as language predictive of depression or  that gives insights into whether someone is living with cancer. However, by looking across many medical conditions, we get a view of how conditions relate to each other, which can enable new applications of AI for medicine.”

The concept of using a “digital language” to help identify certain risk factors is nothing new when it comes to mental illness but is virgin territory when we discuss endocrinology conditions such as diabetes.

More research obviously needs to be done, however, this study demonstrates that not only can our physical actions tune a medical provider into our pathology but so can our social media behavior.

 

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Learning Medical Spanish is Easy!!!

 

Daliah Wachs, MD, FAAFP is a nationally syndicated radio personality on GCN Network, KDWN, and iHeart Radio.

 

 

 

Posted in children, Entertainment, Health, Millennials, news, smart devices, Social Media

What Are They Saying? Your Guide to Teen Slang

Once we became accustomed to words like “dope,” “word,” and “sick”, a new generation introduced their vernacular.

Social media has changed the way we talk.  Words need to be abbreviated, and many times one word must assume a whole phrase.

Generation Y’s (Millennials) and Z’s (those born after 1995) have learned to be concise, descriptive, and to the point as technology and social media encourage less characters/keys being used to get one’s point across.

So here’s a guide to what the young ‘uns are saying:

  • GOAT: Greatest Of All Time (you may see pics of goats in Tom Brady jerseys…..”
  • BAE: one’s love, or babe.  Stands for “Before Anyone Else”
  • Lit:  Cool or Awesome!
  • Woke: aware of social issues
  • Gucci:  Good or cool
  • Hundo P – Short for “I’m 100% positive/certain”
  • Squad/Fam: Group of close friends
  • Throw Shade:  Make fun of/criticize, give a nasty look at someone
  • Curve: To reject someone romantically
  • Salty: Bitter about something or someone
  • Ghost: To ignore someone
  • Skurt: to leave, tell someone to go away
  • Sip Tea: mind your own business
  • Ship: relationship
  • Troll:  Those who say nasty things online

Netsanity provides this breakdown:

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And for those of you who need some help translating your kids’ texts:

 

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And we can’t forget the emoji’s. These allow a visual, pictoral way to get one’s message across:

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With building and maintaining strong relationships, communication is key.  For us old dogs, we might need to learn some new tricks.

 

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Daliah Wachs, MD, FAAFP is a nationally syndicated radio personality on GCN Network, KDWN, and iHeart Radio.

She is also a Board Certified Family Physician and Assistant Professor at Touro University Nevada

 

 

Posted in Health, news, Social Media

Selfitis – Obsessive Selfie Disorder Defined

The average person performs more selfies in one day than going to the bathroom.  We witness people take pictures of themselves on trains, in lines at the DMV and while shopping at Wal-Mart, only to re-expose us to their obsession on social media.  We can’t escape people’s faces with peering eyes and face contortions no matter what we do as we are forced to feign care and interest in what their expression is telling us while they are ordering a Big Mac.

We’ve all predicted a “mental disorder” would eventually be named for this obsessive and narcissistic behavior that haunts us every screen shot and follows us with every scroll……and now it has.  Two psychiatrists, Janarthanan Balakrishnan from Thiagarajar School of Management in Madurai and Mark D Griffiths of UK’s Nottingham Trent University surveyed 400 students who attended management courses at two colleges in India and classified them as the following

Borderline

One who takes selfies 3 times a day but DOES NOT post on social media.  34% fell into this category.

Acute

One who takes selfies 3 times a day but DOES post on social media.  40.5% fell into this category.

Chronic

One who takes selfies more than 6 times a day while posting on social media, suffered by 25.5% of respondents.

In fact, after the respondents were asked about their selfie habits, many took selfies.

India is a hotbed of selfitis and tragically boasts the highest selfie death rate in the world (76 cases out of 127 world-wide).

Selfies offer numerous incentives in our current social culture.  These include:

  • Cementing the memory in time
  • Being included in social media feeds
  • Preventing the “out of sight, out of mind” concept when it comes to relationships
  • Competition
  • Attention seeking, by hundreds of people at once
  • Manipulation of facial features and weight depending on lighting, filters and poses.

Think about it, if we want to look attractive, and show the world, we have unlimited picture and editing power.

Indian Medical Association President, Dr. KK  Aggarwal, issued the following warning:

A lot of us have become slaves to devised that were really meant to free us and give us more time to experience life and be with people. Unless precautionary measures are taken at the earliest, this addiction can prove detrimental to one’s health in the longer term.

What precautionary measures can be taken?

When any obsession starts setting in, will power must be utilized and boundaries set. However, when this fails, friends and family members need to be recruited. Assign one person to be your “selfie police” who only allows you one selfie a day.  You and he/she can pick the selfie, dress it up, crop it, spending as much time as you need on this one selfie.  Posting will only be allowed once a day.  After exhaustively creating your one selfie, hopefully you realize the futility of your efforts, and maybe you’ll skip a day, and then two.

Remember, “less is more” and your friends will be more excited to see you or your pic if they weren’t supersaturated with you all day long on their social media feed.

Let me know how it works for you, since I’m not ready to detox yet…..

 

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Daliah Wachs, MD, FAAFP is a nationally syndicated radio personality on GCN Network, iHeart Radio and Board Certified Family Physician