Social Media is Hurting College Students Mental Wellness

 
Mental illnesses such as depression and anxiety are affecting more and more college students due to the daily use of social media. These social media platforms such as Instagram, Snapchat, and Twitter pressure college students to constantly post and showcase their everyday lives. Being consumed by this pressure to post on social media is making many college students more depressed and lonely.

Terms such as FOMO which means “fear of missing out” are becoming normal terminology that is used amongst college students due to watching all their peers on social media. When students are more depressed and lonely they also do not perform as well in school and have a hard time staying motivated. A recent study published by the American Psychological Association found that there were increased negative psychological symptoms in young adolescents who were born in 1995 or later compared to older adults. The largest difference in psychological symptoms occurred in 2011 which was around the time social media had become more relevant to our society. The researchers also found that many adolescents had a 52 percent increase in symptoms consistent with major depression during 2007 and 2017. Spending time with people in person and developing real relationship can be a big protectant against depression for college students. Taking some time to put down phones and computers as well as making time to spend part of our days with people in person and create quality relationships can help alleviate the anxiety and loneliness that social media can afflict on college students.

e-mail:: conwayal@sonoma.edu

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