How Social Media Affects Mental Health And Causes Depression
Social media platforms can affect your mental health do you know how?
In this digital age, people depend more on social media than on any other form of communication. No matter what you do, it’s likely that social media is involved, and this is why it affects our life, behavior, relationships, and mental health.
In many cases, teens and adolescents suffer from anxiety, poor sleep, lower self-esteem, etc. and the list goes on…
But the question is there a link between social media and mental health, still remains unanswered. The answer to this is complicated as there are no data to support this hypothesis. However, a recent study funded by the U.S. National Institutes of Health showed people who use social media are 2.7 times more likely to be depressed.
The reason behind it is participants checking into social media on an average of 30 times per week for just over an hour.
How Social Media Affects Mental Health?
It’s complicated how a system designed to bring us closer to friends and family affect our mental health.
Image Source: Fix.com
Sometimes, scrolling through Instagram might make you laugh at funny memes, connect with friends. On the other hand, there might be times when scrolling through Facebook or Instagram might make you feel bad or jealous. Clearly, social media isn’t that bad it’s like two sides of a coin. But by being opinionated about social media this problem cannot be resolved. Therefore, we need to look at practical steps that can help cure depression.
However, before that, we need to know at the negative impacts of social networks and how they correlate with depression. Things like cyberbullying, smartphone addiction, etc. are a result of social media but it’s up to you to do filtration
Negative Impact of Social Media on Mental Health:
One of the biggest differences between the lifestyle of the past and today’s generation is the time spent on social media rather than connecting with friends in real life. Each individual today has at least one account on social media, maintaining which is time-consuming thereby leading to negative effects that cause depression.
“Social media never cares about emotions, humanity because it is the biggest emotion killer and the main cause of depression “
1. Fear of Missing out FOMO is the most common effect on mental health. It is strongly linked with the use of social media. Basic needs of food, water can be met but when an individual feels he’s not being recognized this might cause depression.
2. Adults and teenagers who engage too much on social media might experience restricted health activities. Meaning they are not performing any physical activity or doing any brainstorming that might bring them a sense of worthiness. If excessive time is spent on social media people stop feeling happy that gives them the feeling of self-satisfaction.
3. Lack of self-confidence also causes depression, and this happens when you start comparing yourself with others. In doing so people forget who they are following usually use a lot of photo editing. Moreover, what they see is not real.
4. Excessive social media usage influences mood typically leading to emotional sadness and lack of sleep.
How To Minimize The Effect Of Social Media That Causes Depression?
1. Pay Attention to what is real
Individuals are more prone to develop loneliness when they compare their lives to others. Hence to overcome the bad effect of social media on mental health engage more in offline communications. In addition to this take part in activities that build self-confidence. Most important of all, never believe everything you see online, focus on reality rather than the portrayal of reality.
2. Turn off Alerts
If you want to deal with the effects of social media on mental health disable notification and alerts. As they are the biggest deviation and they will never let you leave social media.
3. Use Social Networks Carefully
Be smart in terms of the amount of time you spend on social media. As more time you spend more mood swings you will have thereby causing stress. Hence it is ideal to limit social media use. For this, you can even take the help of different apps like Social fever that help curb social media addiction.
4. Avoid using smart-phone before bedtime and 30 minutes after waking up
Educate your family, friends, kids, and loved ones about the negative effects of using the smartphone before sleep and soon after waking up. A full 8 hours of sleep is essential to stay healthy both mentally and physically.
The bottom line:
Social media has its own benefit but if used more it can cause depression. Therefore, it is best to limit usage. If you find any of your family members or friends lonely or talking to themselves. Make them feel a sense of belongingness and spend more time with them. Talking to them and knowing what they have to say will help minimize the bad effects of social media on mental health.
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