Members in the Media
From: WTOP

U.Va. Researchers Find Texts Can Be Early Warning For Suicide Prevention

Researchers at the University of Virginia hope to use text messages to help clinicians detect an increased risk of suicide attempts in real-time.

With software that gauges a person’s mood according to the frequency of positive or negative words sent in a text — like happy, joyful, hate or mad — lead author Jeff Glenn and others aim to use digital data to move suicide prevention beyond relying on patients to self-report suicidal thoughts that can sometimes be fleeting or concealed.

“When the clinician is doing a risk assessment, we’re only getting a really narrow snapshot in time during that face-to-face encounter,” Glenn said in a news release Monday. “What we tried to do is design a study to learn if we could see signs of increased risk through text messaging, which is something that a lot of people do every day.”

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