Researches from Harvard University conducted a study that found that found the types of filters you use on Instagram could potentially linked to your mental health.
The team studied nearly 44,000 photos from 166 different people, and were also notified of each individual’s mental history. Through an analysis of their photos, they were able to accurately predict depression in the individuals 7 out of 10 times. Consider that general practitioners successfully predict depression only 42% of the time in their patients!
As for the types of Instagram filters that are linked to depression? Lead researcher Andrew Reece commented that, “Depressed individuals in our study posted photos that were bluer, darker and grayer, compared to the posts of healthy participants. Depressed people also tended to prefer Instagram’s Inkwell filter, which turns a color image into black-and-white, whereas healthy participants preferred the Valencia filter, which gives photos a warmer, brighter tone.”
Reece also found that people with depression tended to post less pictures of their face. And although the stats from this one study were pretty incredible, Reece understands the incredible difficulty in diagnosing any mental disease. “It’s clear that depression isn’t easy to diagnose, and the computational approach we’ve taken here may end up assisting, rather than competing with, health care professionals as they seek to make accurate mental health assessment.”