By Dr. Marciene Mattleman
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – For years teenagers shared their difficult moments with “Dear Diary.” Despite no feedback, the writers felt better. New research finds that when teenagers detail their angst in a blog, the therapeutic value is even better. Engaging in blogs with an online community brings more relief than a private diary.
Through a random study of teenagers in Israel, teens who showed stress and had trouble relating to friends were divided into six groups. The first two groups blogged about their problems with one group commenting.
The second two groups could blog about anything with one group allowing comments; all four groups were asked to blog twice a week. As a control, two more groups were added to keep print diaries or do nothing at all.
Findings showed the greatest improvement in mood occurred when bloggers wrote about their problems and allowed responses, which were overwhelmingly supportive.
Read about the study at “A Blog As Therapy For Teenagers” in The New York Times.