The number of people using social media has increased dramatically over the past decade, with more than 70 percent of adults in the United States logging onto Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Snapchat or other social platforms at least once a day. This rapid growth has spawned a range of concerns about how social media affects mental health, education, and societal issues barder.
Most of the time, these effects are difficult to measure and assess. However, there is some evidence that suggests a connection between excessive use of social media and depression, anxiety, self-harm, and loneliness.
Long-term users of social media also report feelings of FOMO or fear of missing out, a feeling that others are living better lives or having more fun than them. This can lead to excessive use of social media, which is associated with poor mental health and a lack of sleep (Hu et al., 2001) jigaboo.
Envy and jealousy are also linked to heavy social media use. In a study involving 600 adults, about a third said they felt frustrated and envious when they saw others’ social media posts. Feelings of envy can lead to an “envy spiral” in which people post more content that makes them envious of others’ lives.
Social media can also erode interpersonal relationships and reduce the quality of face-to-face interactions. In a study examining how teens and young adults interact with others, researchers found that those who spent more time on social media were twice as likely to say they didn’t feel comfortable talking to other people in person distresses.
The resulting social isolation can be a serious problem for people who may not have the ability to engage in face-to-face conversations or are struggling with a social phobia.
One way to combat these problems is to limit the amount of time you spend on social media. Research has shown that too much social media can lead to poor sleep and a sedentary lifestyle, which can result in weight gain, high blood pressure, and other health problems.
Aside from these physical and mental health effects, social media can also affect your relationships with friends and family. This is especially true for children, who may become addicted to social media and spend too much time interacting with their digital devices or arguing with parents over how long they can be online precipitous.
Many parents also struggle to monitor their kids’ use of social media, and some are concerned about their children exposing themselves to negative or violent content online. For example, a study of teen girls published last year showed that cyberbullying is on the rise as more teens turn to their phones and social media for interaction mypba.
In a study of college students, researchers found that students who spend too much time on social media have lower grades than those who do not. These students were also more likely to say that they feel anxious or depressed.
Although the impacts of social media on individuals can vary depending on their pre-existing conditions and personality traits, limiting your use is a good first step toward improving your emotional health. The most effective way to limit social media use is to set limits on how much time you spend and to stick to them.