The American Academy of Pediatrics has warned about the potential threats of social media in young kids and teens, including cyber-bullying and “Facebook depression.” Even adults are not free of them across the generations.
Howsoever, while people are talking about the high admiration of social sites, dependence on them may have a negative effect on the mental health. Here are 5 findings which will make you believe that social media isn’t very good for mental well-being rather is pretty damaging.
A school of experts from Nottingham Trent University researched on the psychological characteristics, personality and social media use and they conclude that “it may be plausible to speak specifically of ‘Facebook Addiction Disorder’…because addiction criteria, such as neglect of personal life, mental preoccupation, escapism, mood modifying experiences, tolerance and concealing the addictive behavior, appear to be present in some people who use social networks excessively.” They found, the excessive use of social media makes people introvert and extrovert to use it for different reasons, as do people with narcissistic traits. So the addiction keeps growing inside human mind and the users get addicted to it which takes the people away from real world. And a study shows that the people who are over-dependent on digital devices report feelings of anxiety when they are stopped from using them.
Triggers Melancholy and Invites Isolation
When we use social media frequently or use them for a number of times a day, we become less happy it seems to be. Social media like Facebook conjures up a perception of social isolation, in a way that other lone activities don’t. For example, a young adult when get connected to other friends in social media doesn’t even know whether the friend is reliable or not. He may text his friend through messenger, but no reply comes from opposite direction. Then he unknowingly feels sad, alone, helpless and derails gradually from his reality. “On the surface,” the authors write, “Facebook provides an invaluable resource for fulfilling such needs by allowing people to instantly connect. Rather than enhancing well-being, as frequent interactions with supportive ‘offline’ social networks powerfully do, the current findings demonstrate that interacting with Facebook may predict the opposite result for young adults—it may undermine it.” This actually, according to experts, harms both mentally and physically.
Starts Seeking to Compare Lives with Others
Being the core part to Facebook makes the users feel isolated socially even though they may not be in real life. We start comparing our lives to others while scrolling through our newsfeeds and make judgments about how we measure up. For example, if anyone posts a photo with luxurious car, we start feeling inferior if we don’t have that car that means these comparisons make us feel bad. According to the study, in the social network world, any kind of comparison is linked to depressive symptoms.
Immorality Gets Focused
Particularly youngsters even including adult people get busy with unreal world while using Facebook and get demoralized from the reality. Sometimes altercations between friends occur during commenting on any posts for nothing. A study looked at the connection between envy and depression in Facebook use and, interestingly, discovered that envy mediates the Facebook-depression link. That is, when envy is controlled for, Facebook isn’t so depressing. So it may be the envy that’s largely to blame in the depression-Facebook connection.
Making More Friends Make More Unsocial
Few years back, it was found in a study that more friends on social media doesn’t necessarily denote you have a better social life rather it seems to be a cap on the number of friends a person’s brain can handle, and it takes actual social interaction (not virtual) to keep up these friendships. So feeling like you’re being social by being on Facebook doesn’t actually work. Since loneliness belongs to myriad health and mental health problems even including premature death, getting real social support is indeed important. Time of virtual friend doesn’t have the therapeutic effect as time with real friends.
True that it doesn’t mean using social media is not benefitted rather it has turned our life into new horizon. Definitely, this keeps us connected with others around the globe and help us find the dear ones who we would not have touch years ago. But the thing is too much involvement in social media affects people mentally. Even the thinking power of human mind gets worsened. Getting on social when you have some time to kill, or, worse, need an emotional lift, is likely a bad idea. And studies say that taking a break from Facebook helps boost psychological well-being. If you feel brave, try to take a little break, and see how it goes and if you’re going to keep “using,” then at least try to use in moderation.