01 Mar How Social Media Affects Your Mental Health
There’s no shame in saying that technology and social media plays a major role in our everyday lives. We take pictures of what we eat, where we go, and what we do for the world to see.
While we may find entertainment scrolling through our news feeds for memes and attractive pictures, it keeps us from reality.
During these unorthodox times, social media can leave good and/or bad impacts on our well-beings.
From depression to low self-esteem, social media can make you feel small. You notice some of your followers receive more likes than you, have more followers than you, or maybe the content you post isn’t getting enough attention.
There are so many ways which social media can negatively affect your health. Here are a few outcomes that may convince you to put your phone down for a day or two.
Anxiety and Depression
Social media is a defining factor to a person’s mental health. In fact, social media has proven that it negatively affects children and young adults’ mental health, leading to anxiety and depression.
According to studies from Jean Twenge, PhD, young adults in the mid-2010s experienced “psychological distress, major depression, or suicidal thoughts, and more attempted suicide” due to social media use.
When you’re on social media, it can lead you to a breaking point and then keep you down. It’s important to know that you’re not alone in this. It is also important to talk to someone for emotional and mental support (especially during these times).
If you scroll through a few Instagram models and social media personalities’ shirtless or beach pictures, you may feel like it’s ideal to look the same way.
Of course, magazines and other sources of the media contribute to this close-minded view of body image. If you don’t fit this particular category, you may suffer from low self-esteem. This is definitely a negative factor of social media that can affect your mental health in the long run.
Keep this in mind: you are beautiful the way you are.
Have you ever pulled an all-nighter scrolling through hilarious videos on TikTok from 12 a.m. to 4 a.m.? When you finally fall asleep, you wake up feeling extremely fatigued?
Social media is extremely addicting and it can truly affect your physical and mental well-being. Everyone needs at least 8 hours of sleep a day, and a cup of Dunkin’ Donuts coffee will not help you survive social media induced sleep deprivation.
The best advice is to set a timer for yourself for social media usage and prioritize a time for you to sleep. Some phones also have the option to limit how much time you spend on each app.
Speaking of social media addiction, using too much social media a day, a week, or a month, can negatively affect your mental health.
If you can’t use your phone for 5 minutes without checking Instagram notifications, or how many likes and retweets you get on Twitter, you’re definitely addicted.
According to Etactics, when people receive notifications on their phone after posting, “they feel a positive sensation of dopamine.”
This advice definitely intertwines with sleep: prioritize your social media usage, deactivate your account for a bit, or uninstall the app. Do anything that will keep you from checking your phone every minute.
Things to Do Aside from Social Media
So, you’ve seen the negative effects of social media on mental health? What are some things you could do to outweigh the bad with the good?
Sure, you may hear things like “read a book,” “go for a walk,” or “exercise.” Whoever told you that is absolutely right. As long as you’re keeping yourself sane during the pandemic, it’s great to do other things that we love away from technology.
If you’re a fan of writing journal entries, watching cult classic films, or yoga, social media may be the last thing on your mind for a while!
What do you do to protect your mental health? Drop a comment below and let us know!
Be sure to check out our latest article on The 78th Golden Globe Awards Recap!