Exploring the use of mobile information and communication technologies by people with mood disorders

Hamish Fulford (Lead / Corresponding author), Linda McSwiggan, Thilo Kroll, Stephen MacGillivray

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Abstract

Information and communication technologies (ICTs) have become increasingly integrated into how care is delivered and received. However, no research has yet explored how people with mood disorders use mobile information and communication technologies (mICTs) in their everyday lives and, more specifically, how they might use mICTs to look after themselves. An exploratory qualitative study, within secondary and specialist mental health Services, was undertaken. Data generation involved in‐depth, semi‐structured interviews with 26 people with mood disorders. Participants’ data sets were analysed using constructivist grounded theory (CGT). The resultant theory explains how mICTs were used in daily life, and also, more specifically, how they were used to manage recovery from mood disorders. The findings reveal that people with mood disorders used their mICTs to centralize themselves within their on‐ and offline worlds and their importance of attachment were central in their continued use. These findings have the potential to inform and encourage the further incorporation of mICTs into the health and social care settings; spanning the therapeutic to systemic levels so that the full potential of these ubiquitous technologies can be harnessed to improve care and care delivery. Yet, without adequate resource and support, health and social care professionals’ efforts will be hampered, contributing to technology redundancy and high attrition rates in the use of this type of technology.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1268-1277
Number of pages10
JournalInternational Journal of Mental Health Nursing
Volume28
Issue number6
Early online date19 Jul 2019
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2019

Keywords

  • communication technology
  • mental health
  • mobile information
  • mood disorder
  • qualitative research

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