8 Proofs That Social Media Can Seriously Harm Your Mental Health
By Michael Gorman
Keeping your mental health under control is a very important part of functioning well as a human being. Thus, it is important to understand the pros and cons of behavioral tactics that can lead to positive or negative impacts on your health. While social media is a useful tool most times, it can have a serious impact on the long-time well-being of certain individuals. Health experts, psychologists, nutritionists, and psychiatrists all agree on one thing; that social media can become quite damaging for society as a whole, if not used properly. Today, we will discuss some of the most important reasons why social media can affect mental health – and how we can stay aware of these issues.
- Social media can become addictive
Social media can become addictive because it has the environment to thrive in. Its role in this digital era is extensive; with the Internet being used anywhere and everywhere at a super-low price, content can be loaded way easier than ever. This causes social media to be the number one rising trend on the market. Let’s be honest: social media is available wherever you go, with (almost) whomever you interact with.
Because of the tools that social media is using (e.g. ‘Like’ button for Facebook or the heart button for Instagram), people are contributing to the system to the point of addiction. They want to post about their affairs, travels, marriage statuses, etc., yet most times, these so-called life adventures are less gleeful in real life than they seem to be in pictures. Just as freelancers need essay writing reviews to prove that their work is worth it, social media addicts need approval from their social media friends to live a seemingly “happy” life. But an inflated ego can cause further addiction and serious brain damage to a certain extent.
- It triggers sad feelings instead of happiness
The more we scroll on social media, the less happy we become. This is because social media platforms such as Facebook or Instagram trigger a perception of social isolation in a different sense than other solitary activities do. For instance, painting or writing are solitary activities that require movement, creativity, and joy. They take something abstract and express it in the real form; people who take up on such activities can become more creative and joyful as a result. On the other hand, social media, even if a solitary activity, doesn’t bring any real benefits. Online interactions are not real, communication is not authentic, and social isolation protrudes. Research shows that the more people spend their time on these social media platforms, the more isolated they perceive themselves to be.
- Comparison is not healthy
One of the reasons why social media makes users feel isolated and alone is because it is a “perfect” tool for comparison. People fall into the bad habit and routine of comparing themselves to others and then, drawing conclusions on those comparisons. Scrolling through your Facebook feed doesn’t help at all with this issue. In fact, it only makes it worse. Users are now starting to use online assignment help services to develop better bios and descriptions to generate jealousy onto others. This cannot be healthy.
Studies have long shown that human beings will always try to compare themselves to other human beings in one way or another, and this can lead to serious brain imbalance and depression; having a platform that enhances these feelings of isolation is not at all beneficial for any of us.
- Jealousy can be damaging
It is easily inferred that comparison leads to jealousy, which can lead to further comparison and thus, jealousy. This never-ending cycle can be damaging for many reasons yet one of the most important ones is negative attitudes toward others. When we are jealous of other people, it means that we want what they have; we want more than we own. And we want it because we are not satisfied with where we are. This is not a damaging concept if handled smartly. However, most people in the social media community do not stop here.
“They don’t understand that they are lacking something, and then, go on to start reinventing their lives. Instead, they wish harm to others and develop negative attitudes based on fear,” argues Christina Palfrey, law essay writing service expert. This can seriously damage relationships of all kinds and pose further conflicts between individuals. Jealousy will, in turn, lead to sadness, which can further accentuate our need for belonging. As you can see, now we’re back to social isolation again, which is one of the worst mental health issues to be experienced.
- Social media feeds into our illusions
The worst thing about social media is that it gives out the illusory impression that it might actually be helpful. That is because our instant gratification needs are fed while we scroll or post on it. Social media functions like a drug – the more constantly we use it, the more constantly we’ll want it. When we are held back from having it, we want it even more. It is crazy how illusionary this online world can be yet how desperate we are to be part of it.
- Loneliness vs. popularity
We might think that having numerous friends on social media makes us more popular, but this is just another delusion we feed into. Having more friends on social media doesn’t mean you have a better social life; it means you’re actually spending more time making friends on these platforms than you do in real life, which makes you a rather lonelier individual. It takes real social interaction to connect with people from around the world and expand connections. Feeling like you are “social” on Facebook or Instagram does not make you social in the true sense of the word. This illusionary popularity can impact you as soon as you realize the truth about social media connections and loneliness.
- Real human connection ceases to exist
Unfortunately, real human connection can cease to exist with the new online platforms promoting “connection between people.” We have to remember that as human beings, we have social needs and an urge to feel like we belong. Personal connections are therefore extremely important and a lack of them can be detrimental to our health. Having real connections can be hard to do when we are glued to our screens, which can play a crucial yet negative role in our mental health overall.
- Anxiety and depression rise
Last but not least, comparing ourselves to our friends can be damaging because it further activates the idea of not being enough. If you’re not enough, you’ll continue judging yourself in any way possible, which will program your brain to fail at whatever it is doing – at least, in the long run. If you are not enough, you cannot be successful because you’re never going to be enough to stand out; or at least, that’s what your perception will tell you. Thus, your anxiety will rise, and your depression will skyrocket. If you are not enough, you are afraid of failure, which actives the fight or flight brain mode. This will, in return, activate anxious and depressive emotions within you.
While social media can provide helpful means of communication and interaction with those who are dear to us, it can also form bad habits and addictions. These damaging routines can be hard to get rid of and can, thus, impact our health. Please stay aware of the do’s and don’ts of social media use to ensure that your mental health stays intact.
Michael Gorman is a highly skilled freelance writer and proofreader from the UK who currently works at such a top essay writing service as Bestessay.com. Being interested in everyday development, he writes various blog posts for bestessay.com and discovers new aspects of human existence everyday. In his free time, Michael works at another popular essay writer service in the UK.