Use of social networking websites as a care instrument for hospitalized adolescents

El uso de las redes sociales virtuales como un instumento de atención a los adolescentes hospitalizados

Camila Amaral Borghi Regina Szylit Carolliny Rossi de Faria Ichikawa Michelle Freire Baliza Uyara Talmatare Jesus Camara Heloísa Cristina Figueiredo Frizzo About the authors



This study aimed to understand how social networking websites are used by adolescents and their importance during the hospitalization process.


A descriptive and qualitative study was supported by the virtual ethnographic method and resorted to the symbolic interactionism as theoretical framework. Eleven hospitalized adolescents were interviewed.


Three categories were identified based on the analysis of interviews and posts: Being able to use social networking websites during hospitalization; Using the Facebook® chat to keep connected to friends; Seeking support from friends through social networking websites.

Final considerations:

Facebook® was the social networking website that adolescents used the most, standing out as an important form of entertainment during hospitalization that facilitates communication and social support. Healthcare professionals should value the use of social networking websites by hospitalized adolescents and encourage access to these tools, providing hospital resources to expand and facilitate this access.

Adolescent; Hospitalization; Nursing; Social Networking

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