The use of online social networking has continued to grow year by year. We often use these sites to communicate with others, learn new information, and interact with different people. People also use the internet to watch videos, text, engage in video chats, do research, and read news articles. As online use continues to grow it’s important to look at the pros and cons of this behavior. For example, people often use Facebook groups and Reddit subgroups to talk to others and look for support regarding diets, mental health, DIY projects, and much more. Research shows that this support can benefit people’s physical and mental health.
Research has also shown that internet and social media use can increase mental health symptoms. For instance social media sites such as Facebook may facilitate bullying or lead to the internalization of societal pressures. People may also experience loneliness or FOMO (fear of missing out) when seeing others’ posts and making comparisons.
Given that using the internet and social media site may have positive or negative impacts on mental earth, it’s important to be aware of your use and how it may be affecting you. For example, limit your social media time to 30 minutes a day for 3 or 4 days a week and see if it changes your mood.
Author: Tiffany Araujo, M.S.