Can Social Media lead to depression?
Most people use social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat, Instagram, and others. It became their central part of how they communicate to the world. They share information, post their selfies, view some viral memes, stay connected to their families and friends, and also for social interaction to the people whom they never met in their real life but still be considered as friends.
On the other hand, a study found that using different social media platforms is strongly linked with depression among young adults than time spent online.
A research in the Department of Epidemiology at the Brown University School of Public Health found that the nature of social media interactions is a significant factor for mental health outcomes.
Another research conducted by the University Of Pittsburgh School Of Medicine shows that the more young adults use social media, the more likely they are to be depressed.
Here are some reasons why social media leads to depression.
1. Unwanted Contacts
People received offensive, confronting or obscene content messages like asking to send confidential pictures and do things online that makes them uncomfortable.
Youth can be oppressed or defame by fellow youth via post or text.It causes psychological, emotional and physical stress. Individuals who are bullied have a higher risk of depression. These can lead to suicide to the victim.
3. Internet addiction
People who excessively use the internet have the higher risk of mental health such as depression. A research also shows that the longer you spend your time on social media, the more likely you are to be depressed.
4. Feeling of envy
It will draw out to people who are exposed in a highly idealized representation of peers; and the one-sided belief that others lead happier and more successful life.
5. Feeling of time wasted
It implies to people who engage in activities on social media. It adversely influenced mood.
6. Reduction of interpersonal communication
Social media allow an individual to interact with a huge number of people; these interactions are not deep and cannot replace everyday face-to-face communication. It decreases the interpersonal communication with their family and in the wider social environment.
7. Altered impression
It may lead to indecent conclusions concerning physical appearance, intelligence, educational level, moral integrity, as well as several other characteristics of online friends.
8. Emotion Suppression
You diverted to undesirable emotion without giving the brain the opportunity to resolve the problem linked with this emotion, you get away from this emotion and suppress them. Suppression of emotions leads to stress and internal problem.
9. Social Anxiety
It increases the anxiety about interacting with others; it could also have the opposite effect in increasing our fear of being alone.
10. Fear of missing out
People want to do what everyone else is doing. It induces anxiety and it increases to negative feelings and emotions, and creates a mental health problem.
11. Trapped in the misconception of thinking that it will help
Comparable to a drug, people think getting a fix will help, but it essentially makes them feel worse, which comes down to an error in their ability to predict their response.
12. Stress, Fatigue
Consistent switching from one task to another can occur, while using social media can strongly tire your brain. The brain takes time to absorb the data received and process the information. It is constantly preoccupied with social networking communication during the day until evening, your brain gets tired.
A study shows that Facebook use was associated with less contentment in life and moment-to-moment happiness. It conveys the fact that Facebook raises a perception of social isolation.
Many experts are uncertain if social media causes depression; or if the person who is already depressed is more drawn to the digital realm. Social media may be a symptom rather than a cause of depression.
“One strong possibility is that people who are already having depressive symptoms start to use social media more, perhaps because they do not feel the energy or drive to engage in many indirect social relationships,” said senior study author Dr. Brian A. Primack the director of the Center for Research on Media, Technology, and Health at the University of Pittsburgh.
Possibly depression is causing people to use social media more frequently than others or people who are depressed could be using social media to fill the facet of their life that is bringing them down.