Saturday, June 15, 2024

Polaris of Enlightenment

Saturday, June 15, 2024

Polaris of Enlightenment

Finnish study: social media use tied to teen anxiety

Published 9 June 2024
- By Editorial Staff
Spending too much time on social media also leads to poor grades and a poorer self-image.

The more time junior high school girls spend on social media each day, the more anxiety they experience. Girls who were addicted to social media also experienced more fatigue and loneliness, according to a study conducted in Finland.

Researchers from the HUS Association, the University of Helsinki, and the Western Uusimaa Welfare Area launched a study in the fall of 2022, targeting girls in their first year of high school. A total of 1,164 girls participated in the study by completing an online survey. The girls were asked questions about their health, mood, fatigue and loneliness, as well as their cell phone use.

They found that the more time the girls spent on social media, the worse they felt. Among other things, it had a negative impact on their grades, and they had more anxiety and a poorer self-image.

– More and more Finnish high school students are suffering from exhaustion, and referrals to child and adolescent psychiatry for depression or anxiety have increased, said Silja Kosola, an associate professor at the Western Uusimaa Welfare Area and the University of Helsinki, in a press release, according to Finnish state broadcaster Yle.

Almost six hours a day

On average, girls spent 5.8 hours a day on their phones, with 3.9 hours typically spent on social media. In contrast, about 14% of girls spent up to six hours a day on social media, and those who considered themselves addicted also often had poorer health than those who were not addicted. These girls were more tired and lonely, among other things.

– Every sixth person in the study meets the criteria for possible social media addiction, and it was associated with poorer mental health and well-being, says Elina Holopainen, an adolescent gynecologist at the HUS Association and the University of Helsinki.

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