Science Says: There’s A Big Correlation Between How We Use Social Media And Depression

It comes as no surprise that social media and depression are linked, as there have been several studies done over the years proving this. Previously, the focus of these studies has been on teens and adolescents. Now, there’s a new one out, and it’s pointing to how social media and depression affect millennials.

A recent study from Texas State University is now saying it’s not social media alone that causes depression, it’s the way we millennials use social media that’s the big problem, and here’s exactly what researchers found.

Krista Howard, a health psychologist at Texas State University, and Natalie Ceballos, a neuroscientist at Texas State University, took a look at over 500 undergrad students who were active on social media. Via an online survey, Krista, Natalie, and their team asked these students certain questions to help measure certain social media behaviors and depressive symptoms.

“Previous studies have stated that excessive social media use can maybe contribute to depression. But we wanted to see what specific things people with depression were doing on social media that might be different from people who didn’t.” Natalie said about her research.

Natalie, Krista, and their team found that students who could be categorized as having Major Depressive Disorder were most likely to engage in certain negative social media behaviors.

These negative behaviors include being concerned about being tagged in photos they considered unflattering and comparing themselves to other people on social media. In addition, these participants were also not as likely to post photos of themselves with other people and had fewer connections on social media than their counterparts that didn’t meet the criteria for MDD.

The study concludes by saying, “the current study used a systematic approach to evaluate both general and specific social media behaviors associated with the presence of major depressive disorder (MDD) in a population of young adults. The findings from this study highlight three main types of social media behaviors that are distinguishable between individuals who meet criteria for MDD and those who do not: social comparisons, social media addiction, and social interactions. These results suggest that negative social media behaviors such as increased social comparisons and addiction on social media are more associated with individuals who meet the criteria for MDD, whereas, positive social media behaviors, such as social interaction with others, are more associated with individuals without MDD.”

Natalie and Krista are currently working on more studies to better understand exactly how social media affects mental health, in the hopes of being able to then suggest better solutions for treatment.

Bre is a female millennial go getter residing in New York. One part entrepreneur, one part geek, she obtained her degree in Textile/Surface Design from The Fashion Institute of Technology.

She has held some exciting roles in both fashion as a designer working for brands like Victoria’s Secret and Henri Bendel, as well as in ad tech working for publishers like Ziff Davis.

Today she operates her own luxury label Bre Avery, along with Chip Chick Media which reaches millions of women each month.

Bre is passionate about teaching women how to build a business and be an entrepreneur, in addition to keeping her readers informed of the latest technology trends and exciting products to improve their lifestyles.

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