Want stress-free life? Then limit social media use. A new study shows a direct link between social media use and health effects. Psychology researchers at the University of Pennsylvaniahas carried out a study to see the after effects of cutting down on social media on people.
The results of their study will soon be published in the Journal of Social and Clinical Psychology in December. Melissa G. Hunt, associate director of clinical training in Psychology led the study. Melissa and her colleagues designed an experiment to test the cause-and-effect relationship between social media use and mental-health issues.
The team recruited 143 students to measure their well-being using two different trials. Researchers then divided participants into groups. The first group included people who used social media sites as usual and the second group added those who used the sites at a limited amount of time.
The team considered the use of the most popular social media sites including Facebook, Snapchat, and Instagram. They tracked the participants for a week and to measure their well-being, they asked them questionnaires considering factors such as loneliness, self-acceptance, social support, fear of missing out (aka FOMO), depression, self-esteem, and autonomy.
“Using less social media than you normally would lead to significant decreases in both depression and loneliness. These effects are particularly pronounced for folks who were more depressed when they came into the study,” explains Hunt.
The authors state, “As our study was the first of its nature, there are many opportunities for further investigation.”