Under the Hood

This Is How Digital Technology Is Affecting Our Mental Health

These days, it seems like we’re essentially living our whole lives on the internet, with an increasing amount of people spending the majority of their days on their phones, especially on social media. But does it take a toll on our mental health? Is it always a good thing?

Digital Technology And Mental Health

In writing, it should be a good thing. Technology and social media, after all, has made us so much more connected than ever, giving everyone easy access to talk with anyone from anywhere else in the world. Gone are the days of letters and waiting, conveniently replaced by instant messaging that’s easily available via a click or two. To cut the story short, social media can be a good thing, and for responsible users, it still is.

The problem, however, is that the more you use it, the more likely you are to feel its downsides as well. In fact, according to a new research, when the rates of depression, anxiety and self-harm saw a sudden increase in the U.S. and U.K. around 2012-2013, there was only one suspect: social media, especially on girls, who the research said are more likely to experience the “fear of missing out.”

Another problem is that some people see social media as sugar. That is, they’re safe in small amounts. What they fail to understand, however, is that social media has become so big that it has radically transformed the nature of peer relationships, family relationships and daily activities. This means that children who choose to avoid it can easily become alienated and feel isolated, both of which can lead to mental health problems.

Furthermore, social media also tend to make adolescents compare their lives to others, failing to understand that the lives shown there are curated and meant to show only the positive side of things.

In conclusion, there is no doubt that digital media in general has many beneficial uses, especially when used responsibly. Viewed through a larger lens, however, there is stronger evidence of self-harm and mental health issues, especially to its young and adolescent users.

Social Media Researchers continue to conduct studies to explore the benefits and negative effects of spending time on social media. Pixabay

Loading...
Join the Discussion