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The Rise of Public Health Awareness in the Age of Social Media

Some of us question the value of Facebook statuses, Instagram stories, the importance of user-generated content commentary, and the surge of professionals imagined through Instagram in a world where social media has the power to alter our everyday vision of reality.

Is there any benefit to all of the time we spend on social media? Or were we better off when our favorite social media platforms didn’t exist? Is it possible to use their power for good?

Moreover, that is how the #ALSIceBucketChallenge, #shotonIphone, #Metoo movements, #Covid19, and #Stayhome took over almost every social media platform.

People are no longer reluctant to tell others about their self-described flaws. Social media users, especially influencers, and celebrities are changing public image and empowering those who live with the ailments that afflict them by raising awareness and having a social media presence.

Social Media and Health Awareness:

Social awareness, or a greater understanding of society and the knowledge of available options, is one of the core purposes of education. According to Amartya Sen, the concept of progress, usually associated with education, should guarantee various freedoms, including the freedom of choice.

Alternative awareness and a skeptical attitude towards what is taken for granted are prerequisites for this freedom. An extensive understanding of evidence-based approaches to public health and safety is required more than ever.

To dive into an evidence-based approach towards bringing awareness, an online mph degree can help health professionals make a difference in their community, influence global trends, and keep a lucrative profession for many years as an expert medical professional.

It is evident how much social media platforms contribute to public health awareness and prevention during pandemic virus transmission. Without a doubt, the coronavirus (COVID-19) posed a significant global threat, wreaking havoc on different countries across the globe and public gatherings and causing chaos among other healthcare systems throughout the world.

The pandemic has propelled public health issues to the forefront, sparking a surge of interest in community health worldwide. According to Google search since early 2020, search queries connected to personal hygiene and infectious diseases have increased by at least 80%. As a result, people who are at the forefront are well aware of the situation.

Social media alters people's perceptions of health and sickness. Stereotype desensitization teaches us to think outside of the box. With the help of social media, people learn, grow, and understand things much more quickly, all thanks to the Internet's rapid accessibility and connectivity.

Raising awareness on social media helps deliver a message, attract attention, and encourage people to talk about the problem. It may not appear to be much at first sight, but if you comb through the rants and memes, you will quickly realize the actual power of correlation. When used correctly, social media can be an excellent tool for medical education.

Reasons to Use Social Media as a Health Awareness platform:

Apart from increasing exposure to your event/health initiative, there are various reasons to use social media to raise awareness, including generating more submissions from potential attendees and expanding the market for the brand, product, and events. In addition, you can contact millions of people all around the world via social media. Making new relationships has never been more straightforward.

Social networking helps improve targeted traffic, form new relationships, and gain exposure to the general public. Unfortunately, many people are unaware of the actual advantages of using social media to increase brand recognition. On the other hand, those who see its value can use it to reach out to and engage with more significant audiences.

Social media demonstrates support through photos and hashtags, urging people to share experiences of individuals who are not often heard, and aiding others through online communications. It is how social media usage helps people be aware of the norms and the trends of the world or society.

Numerous researches have proved that the usage of social media platforms has a substantial positive impact on public health awareness, behavioral changes, and general protection against various health awareness programs, such as COVID-19.

Healthcare professionals use social media platforms to raise public health awareness by disseminating brief messages to specific audiences, either by making a reel video, stories, or animations.

Social Media Engagement and Importance For Public Health:

  • When used in combination with conventional public health communication methods, social media can be very effective. While some believe that social media can be used as a standalone channel that is separate from "conventional" health communication methods, the strategies that work for social media are the ones that also work for traditional health promotions and announcements.
  • We target and reach a wide range of audiences via social media platforms. For example, some people prefer to digitally receive health and fitness information and communication with public health organizations, just as some audiences prefer to receive health information via print materials or from their peers.
  • We can now communicate public health information in new places thanks to social media. We can distribute relevant material in new and emerging channels, evaluate how our messages resonate in different spaces, and get numerous exposures to messages through social media.

Public health organizations can provide relevant content where people are already spending their time using social media channels.

  • In real-time, we listen and collect input through social media campaigns. As a result, we can learn more about our viewers by paying attention to social media conversations at the aggregate level as they evolve in real-time, a unique social media feature.

Social media has been used to inform and support public health surveillance and epidemiology in the same way that it has been used to inform and support public health inspection.

  • We can increase direct engagement through social media. Finally, because of the multi-way, interactive capability built into these platforms, social media may help us enhance direct involvement to maintain and increase trust and credibility and other engagement benefits discussed in this paper.

Conclusion:

Social media and its various platforms to conduct mental health campaigns have always been a successful tool since it allows one to quickly reach out to many individuals.

Current findings support the use of social media to enhance health promotion initiatives by offering social support to people who are changing their habits. However, although it appears that social media can give participants social support and help them improve their health outcomes, most research to date has focused on either health outcomes or social support rather than the two together.

Participants and viewers are virtually a part of the campaign with the use of technology. By adequately employing digital media as a platform for knowledge transmission, there is an emerging trend in mental health awareness.

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