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Social media and mental health risk factors


Does online media affect emotional well-being What we truly know


Social media and mental health risk factors

Indeed, we found that social media use problems predicted increases in mental health problems 1 year later this was true for both depressive symptoms and ADHD attention deficit hyperactivity disorder

“For children and teens, I think the most compelling evidence is the researchTrusted Source regarding cyberbullying on social media,” said a senior mental health researcher at the University of California, San Diego. “Cyberbullying is associated with symptoms of depression and suicidality. It may be a particular problem for youth who identify as sexual or gender minorities.”

Dr. Barounis also noted that social media use could displace other behaviors, such as sleep and exercise, which are “important for maintaining good mental health.” Researchers study this process through what is known as 

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To give an example, she said:“If a youth is staying up late each night on social media and not getting enough sleep, the lack of sleep can lead to feelings of irritability or depressed mood the next day.”

She cautioned, however, that this does not mean that social media use causes mental health conditions, noting that the relationship between chronic sleep problems and clinical depression in youth is complicated.

Dr. Naslund agreed that social media can perpetuate “targeted hate from others” or cyberbullying, which can have a negative effect.He added that although research related to social media and mental health is generally mixed, “exposure to hateful content online  such as viewing or being targeted by derogatory content targeting race, ethnicity, or gender — is associated with poorer mental health and feelings of distress.”

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