There is no doubt about that media has huge power and influence on people and their mental health. To constantly be on your phone to check, update and compare your social media profiles to others in your society and around the world creates an false illusion of acceptance and a quick bust for ones self-esteem, but in the long term studies shows that social media is one of to most common and most influential places where symptoms of depression starts to emerge. But for us to understand why Media has such an effect on our mental health we need to break down what media effects are (Igor Pantic, 2014).
During the past decade online social networking has caused big changes in the way we people communicate and interact with each other, however, some of these changes may have affect some normal aspects of human behavior and cause mental disorders. Several studies have shown the results that constant use of social media platforms is linked to symptoms of depression, such as anxiety, and low self-esteem. But why do we get depressed instead of happy when we see/hear and take in information about our fellow human beings?
Media has a huge effect on us, both on our behavior and thinking. It gives you ideas, and it can inspire you to do certain things and drive you to initiate what you see. Everyone with access to media is affected by media. The media controls the society and the ones behind the media are the artists and designers. Media is capable of changing human behavior, living style and moral thoughts and consequences. It is an ever changing development and with it generations will change as well (Poorvikamr, 2012).
Nick Zagorski writes in his article ”Using Many Social Media Platforms Linked With Depression, Anxiety Risk”, that ”Research has suggested a link between spending extended time on social media and experiencing negative mental health outcomes. New evidence suggests that whether it’s distracted attention from using multiple social media outlets or the emotional consequences of a negative online experience, it’s the quality—not so much the quantity—of social media engagement that may affect mood and well-being”. But why? Nick Zagorski answers this by writing, ”One possible mechanism is that people who use many different platforms end up multitasking, such as frequently switching between applications or engaging in social media on multiple devices. Studies have found that multitasking is related to poorer attention, cognition, and mood. Other potential problems of using multiple platforms include an increased risk of anxiety in trying to keep up with the rules and culture associated with each one and more opportunity to commit a gaffe or faux pas since attention is divided” (Nick Zagorski, 2017). The use of social media is an integral part of being a citizen in todays modern societies, and by understanding how social media can lead to depression is a important topic which should be a obvious matter to educate among young people. In overall, regardless the negative side of social media, the mass media impact is necessary for a real cultural and social growth for the people.
Igor Pantic, Online Social Networking and Mental Health, 2014, [online] available at: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4183915/
Poorvikamr, Imoact of Media on Human Behavior, 2012, [online] available at: https://poorvikaramesh.wordpress.com/2012/08/12/impact-of-media-on-human-behaviour/
Nick Zagorski, Using Many Social Media Platforms Linked With Depression, Anxiety Risk, 2017, [online] available at: http://psychnews.psychiatryonline.org/doi/full/10.1176/appi.pn.2017.1b16