The quantity and quality of the social networks of young people with early psychosis compared with closely matched controls Academic Article uri icon

abstract

  • This study compares the social networks and perceived social support of 26 people with early psychosis and 26 people without a mental illness. The two groups were closely matched for age, sex, education level, and employment and relationship status, and had equivalent levels of depression. There were no differences between the two groups in the amount of perceived social support, number of family members, and number of participants with acquaintances. However, the psychosis group identified significantly smaller networks, t (50)=-2.34, P=0.024, with fewer friends, t (48)=-3.61, P=0.001, fewer people to turn to in a crisis, t (22.97)=-2.34, P=0.028, and a higher likelihood of service providers as members, chi(2)(1)=7.02, P=0.008. Given the important relationship between strong social networks and high levels of community functioning and tenure, future research needs to evaluate the type of social support most beneficial for people with early psychosis and to develop strategies to maintain and facilitate that support.

publication date

  • November 30, 2000