Individuals often seek health information in the form of online personal testimonials from others facing similar medical issues rather than only relying on medical experts’ advice. However, little is known about related motivations and the effects of these health testimonials on individuals’ health-related outcomes. The current study investigated the influence of individuals’ self-concepts on health testimonial selections to test predictions derived from the SESAM model. Mothers (N = 148) selected two health testimonials, featuring different preschooler sleep training methods. Mothers’ self-concepts (i.e., parenting style) predicted selection of testimonials with the same parenting style. Reading testimonials that aligned with one’s own self-concept improved self-efficacy, outcome expectations, and behavior regarding sleep training through self-improvement social comparison, with impacts still detectable after one week.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Health(social science)