Social media use among teenagers could be a major factor in the surge of depression, as there’s more focus on environmental risk factors for the condition.
Roger McFillin, a doctor of psychology, told The Epoch Times that the rise in social media has caused some young people to become less socially adept. He said these teens would rather isolate themselves behind screens than experience an authentic life.
The paper, citing a 2023 study in Health Psychology and Behavioral Medicine, reported that those who use social media primarily to maintain relationships “feel lonelier than those using it for other motives.”
“Excessive social media use perpetuates feelings of loneliness – it withdraws us from the real world,” McFillin said.
TRENDPOST: The Trends Journal has reported extensively on the link that social media with depression, especially among the young. (See “SURGEON GENERAL WARNS OF ‘PROFOUND’ MENTAL HEALTH RISKS TIED TO SOCIAL MEDIA” 30 May 2023, “IT’S OFFICIAL: SOCIAL MEDIA IS NOW WORTHLESS” 4 Apr 2023, “HOOKED ON ‘LIKES’? SOCIAL MEDIA COULD CHANGE TEEN BRAIN FUNCTIONS: STUDY” 17 Jan 2023, and “SOCIAL MEDIA = DRUG ADDICTION” 16 Aug 2023.)
Dr. Vivek Murthy, the U.S. surgeon general, issued an advisory in May warning of the risks that social media sites have on mental health—especially young people—and called on lawmakers and Big Tech companies to enforce age minimums and create default safety settings.
Murthy wrote in a 25-page advisory that was based on “a substantial review of the available evidence” that there are “ample indicators that social media can have a profound risk of harm to the mental health and well-being of children and adolescents.”
Besides the social media use, young people today are forced to deal with a failing world. We’re faced with migrant crises, multiple wars, and poverty. Financial constraints mean both parents need to hold jobs and young children are forced to attend day care centers.
Children are also often stuffed with junk food to keep them quiet. (See “ULTRA-PROCESSED FOODS—ESPECIALLY WITH ARTIFICIAL SWEETENERS—LINKED TO HIGHER RATES OF DEPRESSION IN WOMEN” 26 Sep 2023.)