How Social Media May Be Impacting Your Mental Health


Woman Looking at TabletThe use of social media is common in today’s society, but is it possible that using it can affect your mental health? Because the use of social media networks is still a relatively recent phenomenon, not all researchers agree how or to what extent social media use could affect our mental state. The relationship between social media use and mental health remains controversial.


A number of studies have linked depression and depressive states to online communication. One study published by the National Institute of Health found a link between depression and social media use in teenagers. However, the nature of those links is still not clear.

Teens who frequently use social media may have a higher frequency of depression, but whether social media networks contributed to the depression is not clear. It’s also possible that those who have depression are more likely to use social media.

Depression is more likely for a person who uses social media for many possible reasons, just as many factors potentially lead someone who is already depressed to use social media.


The role that addiction plays in the overuse of social media networks is another topic of debate among mental health professionals. Like other forms of addiction, social media addiction is measured by the mental preoccupation a person has with it.

Typically, if social media use causes a person to neglect other aspects of their lives, such as family, school, work or even vacation time, it’s considered an addiction. If social media becomes what a person lives for, a technical interruption can even create withdrawal-like symptoms.