Identifying linguistic markers specific to depression

Depression is a far-reaching condition that can be hard to pinpoint: Like, are you feeling depressed, just anxious, or both? And how do you know if you’re just going through a rough patch or if your mood is symptomatic of something bigger? Although mental health is not an exact science, new studies are providing evidence that technology can help identify and address the condition in a more nuanced way.

Google can help you take those first steps in learning about mental health conditions, your Instagram filters could be a subconscious reflection of your psychological state, and now a new study claims the language you use to write (or text) could be crucial to diagnosing depression.

The study, published in Clinical Psychological Science, sifted through scores of forums and online message boards dedicated to mental health (mainly depression and anxiety). Ultimately, the authors were able to identify linguistic markers specific to those who may be suffering from depression.