Can social media really cause depression?

Over years, there have been many studies on the negative effects of social media on mental well- being which include addiction to social media, poor sleep, poor self-esteem, and potentially poor mental health. Some studies are so heavily seasoned with the negative effects of social media that we would feel like never using the social media again. It is in this scenario that one of the recent studies dispelled the idea of social media being a cause of depression.

The earlier studies made their claim based on the experiments at a single point of time whereas the new research adopted a long-term approach. The research team led by Taylor Heffer, of Brock University in St. Catharine’s, Canada used two longitudinal samples in reaching their conclusion.The study focused on two separate groups of participants, one of 594 adolescents in the sixth, seventh, or eighth grades in Ontario, Canada and the other comprising of 1,132 undergraduate students.

The research was focused on how much time they spent on social media and also on activities such as watching TV, exercising, and doing homework.They also looked at symptoms of depression.

The results revealed that social media usage did not lead to depressive symptoms later in life and this was proved in both groups of participants.In fact, the results even showed that in social media can make people feel better about themselves.