Stuttering on Instagram: What is the focus of stuttering-related Instagram posts and how do users engage with them?

Amir Hossein Rasoli Jokar, Steven Roche, Hamid Karimi

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Abstract

Purpose
Instagram has become a popular platform for sharing and seeking health-related information, including stuttering. However, concerns have been raised about the accuracy, confidentiality, and potential negative impact of such information. This study aims to examine how stuttering is defined and understood on Instagram, and how users engage with related content.

Methods
We analyzed highly engaged Instagram posts with the hashtag "#Stuttering" published within a year and their corresponding comments using thematic analysis.

Results
The results revealed four main themes and nine sub-themes that highlighted different understandings of stuttering on Instagram, including the need for intervention, emotional impact on people who stutter, positive meanings, and mental health implications. User engagement varied based on the nature of the post, with users showing appreciation, objections, seeking advice, celebrating success stories, mocking, or advocating for people who stutter.

Conclusion
Although Instagram can serve as a means of normalizing stuttering and highlighting success stories, it raises concerns about the promotion of non-evidence-based treatments and the use of stuttering for political or entertainment purposes. This study emphasizes the need to critically evaluate health-related information presented on social media platforms. To provide reliable information to PWS and their families who seek information on social media, it is recommended to promote evidence-based information on stuttering through trustworthy organizations such as the National Stuttering Association or the Stuttering Foundation, particularly on special occasions like International Stuttering Awareness Day.
Original languageEnglish
Article number106021
Pages (from-to)1-14
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Fluency Disorders
Volume78
Early online date7 Nov 2023
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2023

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2023

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