social media

Overall time on social media is not related to teen anxiety and depression

The amount of time teenagers spend on social networking sites has risen 62.5 percent since 2012 and continues to grow. Just last year, the average time teenagers spent on social media was estimated as 2.6 hours per day. Critics have claimed that more screen time is increasing depression and anxiety in teenagers. However, new research led by Sarah Coyne, a professor of family life at Brigham Young University, found that the amount of time spent…

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Facebook may actually benefit adult mental health

It is a common belief that using social media platforms can adversely affect people’s mental health, but new research has shown that using these networking sites can reduce an adult’s risk of experiencing depression or anxiety. Facebook’s reputation has sunk in recent years for a variety of reasons, including its role in the 2016 elections and the recent data breach. In addition, studies have suggested that social media can cause psychological distress, loneliness, and depression. For example, research from…

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Using Instagram can increase adolescents’ closeness to friends

Your food, your vacation, your carefully curated life — all posted for your friends in a filtered image. Some may scoff at adolescents’ use of social media networks as they pine for likes. Is this just frivolous behavior? Or are they really just solidifying their social connections to friends? A recent study by a researcher at the University of Leuven found that adolescents’ use of Instagram actually strengthened the closeness of their friendships. Eline Frison…

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Liking on Facebook good for teens’ stress, but being liked…not so much

Facebook can have positive and negative effects on teens levels of a stress hormone, say researchers at the University of Montreal and the Institut universitaire de santé mentale de Montréal. Led by Professor Sonia Lupien, the team found that having more than 300 Facebook friends increased teens’ levels of cortisol. On the other hand, teens who act in ways that support their Facebook friends — for example, by liking what they posted or sending them…

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Social media can influence teens with pro-drug messages

A new NIDA-funded study analyzed the content and demographic reach of a popular pro-marijuana Twitter handle in 2013 and found that only ten percent of the messages mentioned any risky behaviors associated with marijuana use. Given that over 70 percent of followers were 19 years of age or younger – an age group that is using social media at increased rates – these findings underscore the importance of monitoring social media sites that focus on…

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