The Perils of Social Media: How Social Networking is Impacting Mental Health

Social media has become deeply embedded in millions of individuals worldwide, and with its use come many potential issues. It is now well established that the adverse side effects of online communication and networking can have severe repercussions for mental health.

Tayyaba Hassan
May 04, 2023

Photo by Tayyaba Hassan

As we use social media to keep up with friends, display ourselves to others, obtain news and entertainment, or even make important life decisions, we must know how social media affects mental health and causes psychological issues, such as anxiety and depression. 

Understanding these mental health impacts requires us to take an honest look at how our behaviors on social networks affect ourselves and those around us. This is why understanding more about the perils of social media is critical to foundering a healthier relationship with our digital selves.

How does Social Media Impacts Mental Health?

How does social media affect mental health? Social media has become a vital part of our daily lives, providing a direct source of information, connection with peers and family, and entertainment. However, the same tools that keep us informed can also substantially impact our mental health

Researchers have found links between increased social media use and depression, anxiety, poor sleep habits, and low self-esteem. Social media platforms affect mental health in multiple ways. 

The overly curated images we see can create feelings of heightened body image dissatisfaction; the sheer quantity of time spent scrolling can result in a lack of mindfulness; comparison to others' online avatars may contribute to dangerous thoughts or behaviors; and even subtle microaggressions can lead to issues within a person's mental state. Thus, it is essential to make sure that we are mindful of how much time we spend on various platforms and that we connect with people positively and healthily.



Adverse Effects Of Oversharing On Social Media 

In this age of technology and social media, many individuals are oversharing their personal information to stay connected with others. However, it is becoming increasingly apparent that this influx of information can lead to adverse mental health side effects. 

How social media affects mental health? Recent studies show that adverse reactions due to online content often prompts negative feedback that causes one's self-esteem to plummet. Individuals have also experienced jealousy and bitterness compared to posts shared on digital platforms like Instagram, Snapchat, and Facebook. 

Furthermore, users may need help with concentrating on daily tasks due to the sheer volume of content uploaded each day related to inspirational mental health quotes. Oversharing has become a dangerous trend that brings negative consequences to overall well-being. This is why it's essential to take a step back from these types of networks and spend more time engaging in activities away from the computer screen or smartphone.


Managing Jealousy And Comparison On Social Platforms 

Social media activism has become an increasingly popular way to communicate and advocate for causes, which can have a powerful effect on the world. Unfortunately, succumbing to adverse mental health side effects is easy due to comparison and jealousy on these platforms. 

Managing jealousy and comparison is difficult since it often involves adverse emotional reactions like envy, hurt feelings, resentment, or even depression. It's essential to be mindful and practice self-care when navigating the minefield of social media. 

Strategies like setting boundaries on what you see and unfollowing those who trigger negative emotions or limiting your own activity on social platforms can be beneficial for managing jealous feelings. 

Filling negative airtime with positive actions can help refocus your thoughts and counterbalance negative emotions. Lastly, create time limits for online consumption, so you can handle comparisons and feel free from other people's successes or perspectives.

Tips To Reduce Stress While Using Social Media 

Social media can be a constructive tool for social connection and engagement, but it's essential to maintain the use of social media with other activities. Too much social media can cause stress and anxiety, decreasing mental health. To reduce stress while using social media, create a plan that limits your time on social media per day or week.