TikTok Dementia Videos Lack Quality, Study Finds

A study in Frontiers in Public Health has found that the most popular videos about dementia on TikTok don't offer much good information. Dementia affects memory and thinking skills and makes daily tasks hard. It includes diseases like Alzheimer's and is not just a part of getting older. With more people getting older and at risk of dementia, the internet, including social media like TikTok, could help spread important health information.

Researchers looked at 100 TikTok videos tagged with “dementia” to see what kind of information they had. They picked these videos based on how many likes they got, to focus on the most popular ones. They made sure to use a new account so their results wouldn't be biased and only looked at videos in English that were about people, not animals.

To judge the videos, they used two methods. One was the DISCERN tool, which checks if health information is good, and the other was the Global Quality Score (GQS), which rates the overall quality. They found that most of these videos, even though they were popular and got lots of likes and comments, were not very informative or educational.

Most videos were made by family members, not doctors, and the ones by doctors did not get as much attention. This shows that on TikTok, fun or visually appealing videos are more popular than serious health information. The study suggests TikTok isn't the best place to learn about dementia care or treatment.

The researchers think more videos from doctors or academic groups could help. But they also say their study has limits because they only looked at 100 videos and only considered how many likes they got. They hope their work encourages more research into how social media can share health information better.

Photo: Digital Information World - AIgen

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