Media experiences and associations with latent classes of mental health among the bereaved of the MH17-disaster.
Velden, P.G. van der, Schut, H., Meulen, E. van der, Lenferink, L.I.M., IJzermans, J.C. Media experiences and associations with latent classes of mental health among the bereaved of the MH17-disaster. Scandinavian Journal of Psychology: 2018, 59(3), 281-288
Research has shown that the amount of media exposure is associated with post-event mental health problems. Whether bereaved individuals have negative experiences with media reports and whether they are associated with post-event mental health is unclear. This study evaluated these experiences and associations following the MH17-disaster. How media reports were experienced (nine topics, modified MAS), depression symptoms (QIDS-SR), functional problems (WSAS) and event-related coping-self-efficacy (CSE) were assessed about one year post-disaster (May-August 2015) among Dutch bereaved (N = 152). A substantial minority reported negative experiences such as reports made me angry (30) and made me sad (48%). Latent profile analysis with symptoms, problems and coping self-efficacy as indicators, identified four classes of post-disaster mental health: a Well-functioning(class 1), 35.1%; a Mild-problems(class 2), 30.4%; a Sub-clinical(class 3), 27.0%; and a Clinical(class 4), 7.4%. Differences in symptoms, problems and coping self-efficacy levels between classes were large according to Cohen’s ds. Multivariate logistic regression (MLR) showed that the Clinical(class 4) compared to the Wellfunctioning(class 1), more often that felt that reports strongly “embarrassed me,” “made me feel sad,” “filled me with fear” and “served as a magnifying glass.” Future research should assess opportunities and effects of limiting media consumption. (aut. ref.)