Social Media Pressure May Cause Anxiety

Social Media Pressure May Cause AnxietySocial Media Pressure May Cause Anxiety

The reason people are feeling depressed and anxious might be because of their daily social media activities.

New research reveals that teenagers, who frequently use social media and have high emotional investment in their social media sites, are found to have poorer sleep quality, lower self-worth and higher rates of anxiety and depression compared to those teenagers who were less engaged in social media.

The study also highlighted that these effects are stronger for teenagers who use social media at night while also noting the most frequently used social media sites such as Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, Pinterest, Instagram and Youtube.

Dr. Heather Cleland Woods and Holly Scott from the University of Glasgow in the UK studied 467 teenagers by asking them to complete a questionnaire about their sleep quality, self-esteem, anxiety and depression.

The students, 11 to 17 years old, all from the same school, also answered questions pertaining to their length of use of social media on a typical day as well as the length of time they use social media after planning to sleep, medicalnewstoday reported.

Moreover, although the completion of the questionnaire was solely based on self-reports, researchers emphasized that participants were given guidance to gather accurate and credible data.

Woods explained that there is a pressure from social media to be available or to be online all the time. According to her, this pressure can cause the fear of “missing out” which leads to anxiety, depression and poor sleep.

 Emotionally Invested

While overall social media use impacts on sleep quality, those who log on at night appear to be particularly affected. This may be mostly true of individuals who are highly emotionally invested. This means we have to think about how our kids use social media, in relation to time for switching off,” Woods said.

The research and its findings were presented during the Developmental and Social Psychology Section Annual Conference in Manchester, UK which was spearheaded by the British Psychological Society (BPS).

According to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America, depression and anxiety disorders are different. Nonetheless, those who are experiencing depression frequently experience symptoms similar to those who have anxiety disorders such as nervousness, irritability and problems in sleeping and concentrating.

In another web release, the organization added that “anxiety disorders are the most common psychiatric illnesses,” affecting the lives of both children and adults. However, despite having an estimated 40 million American adults suffering from anxiety disorders, only one-third receive treatment.