Kirari Furumoto / Special to the Delta
Social media entertains us in a lot of ways. One of the outstanding features of social media is that it gives us the opportunity to connect with many people from all over the world.
Furthermore, we can check the real-time news and information in the world. However, it could affect our mental health in a bad way if we spend too much time on that.
Today, a lot of people use social media worldwide. About 3.1 billion people use some kinds of social media, according to the statistics in 2017. This number is translated into one-third of the global population. As this number shows, many people in the world use social media.
However, spending too much time scrolling your screen for social media is not good for our mental health. One study conducted by the researchers in the University of Pittsburgh shows that people who had spent more time on social media had 2.2 times the risk of having eating and body image concerns, compared to those who spent less time on social media.
Those concerns that they get from social media could lead them to the high risk of eating disorder.
More and more young adults are addicted to social media.
According to the statistics in 2017, approximately 29 percent of 18 to 24 years old people are addicted to social media. This number is up from 19 percent in 2015. Furthermore, researchers at Chicago University says that addiction to social media could be stronger than cigarettes.
By addicting social media, people would lose the socialization in their real-life and it makes them have low self-esteem, and it turns into some kinds of mental disorder such as depression or social anxiety disorder.
In the worst case, people attempt to commit suicide from those mental disorders that they get by the addiction to social media. There are some reasons why spending too much time on social media affects badly for our mental health.
One of the major reasons is that people tend to compare with themselves and the posts from other users. By doing so, their self-esteem gets low. Even though the users know the posts people make is a highlight of their life event, sometimes it is difficult to avoid making comparisons.
Moreover, it would lead the cyberbullying. One study shows that teens who have experienced being bullied on social media were more depressed, were more irritable and angry.
At the same time, they were more likely to not feel like themselves than those who have not experienced cyberbullying. The cyberbullying also tends people to have mental disorders or suicidal attitude.
One of the best ways to minimize a bad effect from social media is reducing the time to spend on it. This seems very easy and simple, but it might be hard for those who have been using social media a lot.
The primary steps for reducing the time spent on social media is to put our phone in silent mode or use “do not disturb” features. If we do not hear the vibration when we get the notification, we probably do not check our phone that often and this will lead us to reduce the time spending on social media.
Today, it is almost impossible for us to completely cut off the usage of social media because it is one of the most common ways to communicate with people and it is the best sources of getting information of the world.
So, we need to be able to know how to control and limit the time spent on social media. That would help people to save from getting a bad effect from social media.