Chen Sung Wong
HELP University

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Expressive writing during the COVID-19 pandemic: themes of mixed expressive writing Hao Yue Tay; Chengen Yu; Chen Sung Wong; Kususanto Ditto Prihadi
International Journal of Public Health Science (IJPHS) Vol 11, No 1: March 2022
Publisher : Intelektual Pustaka Media Utama

Show Abstract | Download Original | Original Source | Check in Google Scholar | DOI: 10.11591/ijphs.v11i1.21101

Abstract

In order to curb the depression levels among youth during the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) outbreak, we examined the recurrent themes of mixed expressive writing among undergraduates during the pandemic. Previous quantitative studies had emphasized on the effectiveness of expressive writing in reducing depressive symptoms, however, less qualitative studies were conducted in evaluating the content within people’s writings. As the pandemic had caused major disruptions among people, we implemented mixed expressive writing in capturing both positive and negative experiences during the pandemic. Ten participants were recruited to perform mixed expressive writing twice per week, for four consecutive weeks. Thematic analysis was used in analyzing their writings and forming the emerged themes. Five themes were formed, which included ‘school’, ‘relationships’, ‘reflection’, ‘work’, and “random incidents’. Future research should examine the effectiveness of expressive writing in writing specific themes on improving its respective psychological constructs.
The perk of writing: How expressive writing reduces depressive symptoms Efendy Xu; Tara Yen Siang Tan; Hao Wang; Chen Sung Wong; KamYan Chong; Kususanto Ditto Prihadi
International Journal of Public Health Science (IJPHS) Vol 10, No 4: December 2021
Publisher : Intelektual Pustaka Media Utama

Show Abstract | Download Original | Original Source | Check in Google Scholar | DOI: 10.11591/ijphs.v10i4.21103

Abstract

This study aimed to examine types of expressive writing and the underlying themes that will lead to the reduction of depression symptoms. We hypothesized that positive experience writing will significantly reduce depressive symptoms as compared to other types of expressive writing. This study recruited 45 young adults (17 men, 28 women) between 20 and 28 years old to perform online expressive writing for a four-week period and fill in the Patient Health Questionnaire (PHQ-9) before and after the treatment. Our findings suggested that positive expressive writing led to a significantly greater reduction of depressive symptoms as compared to other types of expressive writing. The qualitative analysis showed that there are eight common themes in positive writing that might contribute to the reduction of symptoms: companionship, mattering, gratitude, positive emotions, energetic, motivation, relaxation, and delicious food. Limitations and implications of the findings are discussed.
Supporting mental health during the pandemic: the elements of mattering in expressive writing Jia Yi Khor; Shakti Velan Raja Kumar; Wen Yu Cai; Chen Sung Wong; Kususanto Ditto Prihadi
International Journal of Public Health Science (IJPHS) Vol 11, No 1: March 2022
Publisher : Intelektual Pustaka Media Utama

Show Abstract | Download Original | Original Source | Check in Google Scholar | DOI: 10.11591/ijphs.v11i1.21102

Abstract

Previous studies indicated that the sense of mattering played signifant protective role for mental health amidst the pandemic. This current study aims to explore whether elements of mattering in people’s mind are expressed through expressive writing during the hardships such as pandemic situation. Ten young adults who were not diagnosed with any mental health issue were recruited in to take part in an online experiment over a period of four weeks, where they were instructed to expressively write their weekly positive experiences. Thematic analysis suggested that the content of their writings were consistent to the constructs of interpersonal mattering, such as attention, importance and ego extension, as well as the absence of individuality and noted absence. These findings indicated that elements of mattering were embedded in the positive thoughts of our participants, and were expressed through their writings. Further studies are suggested in order to inestigate the effectiveness of expressive writing to improve the sense of mattering to prevent mental health issues during the pandemic.
Reducing depressive symptoms and increasing positive feelings with expressive writing Chen Sung Wong; Melissa Jane Chua; Kususanto Ditto Prihadi
International Journal of Public Health Science (IJPHS) Vol 10, No 2: June 2021
Publisher : Intelektual Pustaka Media Utama

Show Abstract | Download Original | Original Source | Check in Google Scholar | DOI: 10.11591/ijphs.v10i2.20797

Abstract

This experimental study examined the effect of expressive writing on depressive symptoms. 86 undergraduate students were recruited from a private university to perform online positive experience writing (PEW) (n=31), negative experience (NEW) (n=32) and control topic (CW) (n=23) for three sessions in three consecutive weeks. The depressive symptoms of participants were measured at pre-treatment and post-treatment. It was hypothesized that PEW has significant greater reduction in depressive symptoms compared to NEW and CW based on broaden and build model. Nevertheless, results showed that PEW had significantly greater symptoms reduction than CW, yet there was no significant difference between PEW and NEW. The findings suggested that PEW might be potentially useful in reducing depressive symptoms among undergraduates.