Fomo Fear Of Missing Out
Fear of Missing Out was born the same time social media was. FOMO is a form of anxiety that you experience when you are scared of missing out on a positive experience that others are having. An example of this is constantly checking your phone to see if anyone has invited you out or checking your Instagram to see if your friends are doing something fun without you. With amplified social media use, there is a better chance for you to see that somebody is having a better time than you are at the moment. And that is exactly what causes FOMO.
Emergence Or Worsening Of Mood Disorders
Problematic social media use can exacerbate existing mood disorders or create new ones.
Teens often use social media to fill a void that is created by a lack of confidence in real-life situations. Low self-esteem or shyness can lead a young person to create a virtual identity and live in a virtual world. This increases loneliness, isolation, and depression. Studies show that increased social media reliance correlates to decreased satisfaction with life.
The fear of missing out, guilt, and internal pressure drive the need to check every notification and respond quickly. As social competition and pressure increase, sleep deprivation continues, and real-life obligations suffer, anxiety often develops.
How Many Social Media Accounts Does The Average Person Have
Its very unlikely you have just 1 social media account.
There are thousands of social media apps and platforms all over the world. They are all constantly fighting for your attention.
The average person has 8-9 social media accounts. This has doubled since 2013, when the average person just had 4-5 accounts.
|Year||Average Number of Social Media Accounts|
The number also varies significantly depending on the country.
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Social Media Effects On Teens: Health Hazard Or Healthy Inspiration
Along with providing ways to seek help and support, social media also provides forums in which teens can encourage each other in unhealthy and dangerous behaviors. Hence, teens with eating disorders or those who self-harm can connect with others to talk about their self-destructive routines. In these online forums, obsessive calorie counting, fasting, or over-exercising are accepted and encouraged. As a result, teens may learn ways to hide or intensify the behavior, putting them at greater risk.
On the flip side, a teen social network can inspire teenagers to develop healthy habits. Thus, seeing peers eating nutritious food, doing something creative, or getting outside in nature can encourage other teens to do the same. Social networks can create peer motivation, inspiring young people to try something new, follow their dreams, and speak up about things that matter to them. Teens can also find positive role models online. Hence, the effect of social media on teenagers might actually result in more unplugged time and increased self-care behaviors.
Decline In Reading Culture:
Reading is a mental process of reacting to an authors message represented by written or printed symbols.
Social media use is negatively associated with reading and academic performance. SM could be distracting from homework and examination with a potential knock-on effect on literacy.
It is common knowledge that a good number of higher institution students have lost their love for reading.
They feel like they can be more educated on social media. Hence, the old reading culture is lost. And, it has caused havoc to teenagers and youths.
It can be rightly asserted that addiction has made reading lose its value in our present-day society.
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Why Is Social Media Addictive
There are a number of ways social media can be addicting. First, social media can be a way to connect with others. It can provide a sense of community and belonging. For some people, social media can be a place to go to feel connected to others. And for some people, social media can be an escape from their everyday lives.
Second, social media can provide a sense of validation. likes, comments, and shares can make people feel good about themselves and their posts. And for some people, social media can be a way to seek validation from others.
Third, social media can be a source of entertainment. For some people, social media can be a way to pass the time. And for some people, social media can be a way to avoid boredom or existential crises.
However, social media can also have negative effects on mental health. For example, some people may experience anxiety and depression due to social media use. They may become preoccupied with social media and constantly compare themselves to others online. And for some people, social media can be an unhealthy obsession that takes away
Social Media Addiction In Teens And Young Adults
Social media addiction is a behavioral disorder in which teens or young adults become enthralled by social media and are unable to reduce or cease their consumption of online media despite clear negative consequences and severe drawbacks. While many teenagers engage in some form of online media on a daily basis , teen social media addiction is characterized by the combination of an excessive media consumption, an increasing reliance on social media as a way to feel good, and an inability to stop or curb this behavior despite suffering losses in friendship, decreased physical social engagement, and a negative impact at school.
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What Are The Downsides Of Social Media Addiction
Overusing social media has several drawbacks. The downsides of social media addiction are listed below.
- Lack of empathy:A person who struggles with social media addiction often chooses to communicate through email, messaging, or social media rather than face-to-face. The lack of face-to-face communication can impede a persons empathy as feeling empathy is best learned through social situations.
- Difficulty sleeping:Excessive use of social media around bedtime can negatively affect sleep quality. The blue light emitted from mobile phones can interfere with the bodys ability to prepare for sleep.
- Fear of missing out :Social media creates deep envy of the highlights of other peoples lives. This can result in feelings of missing out on something important that others may have at the moment. Several social media addiction facts indicate that FOMO is heavily linked to greater social media usage.
- Loss of interest in activities once enjoyed:As a person devotes a large chunk of time to social media, there is very little time left to do other activities that once brought enjoyment.
- Conflict in real-life relationships:Social media can negatively affect the quality and expectations that a person has of real-life relationships. Leaning too much on alternative modes of communication such as social media sites creates a gap in real-life communication and tends to weaken relationships.
Negative Effects Of Social Media On Education
Social media are a websites and applications that enables a person to create and share a content. A person can also interact with someone like family, friends, loved ones all around the world. It deals with the sites that a person uses in order for them to have a communication. It has some negative outcomes that has a aggressive feelings, aggressive thoughts, and aggressive behavior. Social networking describes the phenomena found in, participatory and self-expressive websites such as Facebook, Twitter, My space, and Youtube.
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Social Media Addiction Scale
The Social Media Addiction Scale was developed by Tutgun-Unal and Deniz to measure the social media addiction of university students . The SMAS consists of 41 items, and scores were obtained from a 5-point Likert scale, which is graded with frequency expressions within the range of Always ,Often ,Sometimes , Rarely to Never , indicating that the higher point value indicates more social media addiction . A brief description of the factors that make up SMAS and the items included in these factors are as follows: items 112 in the measurement tool are related to the Busy dimension and measure the effect of social media in which a person is engaged items 1317 are related to the Emotion and Regulation dimension and measure social medias influence on ones emotions items 1822 are related to the Repetition dimension and measure the inability to control the use of social media and the repetition of usage of the platform and items 2341 are related to the Conflict dimension and measure the effect of social media on the negative consequences of a persons life. The Cronbach alpha value of the scale was found to be highly reliable, with a value of 0.967 .
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The Dangers Of Social Media Addiction
Social media apps are designed to give us a quick hit of pleasure. They are addictive because they activate the same reward pathways in our brain as drugs or gambling. This is why we can find ourselves spending hours scrolling through our newsfeeds, even when we know its not doing us any good.
The dangers of social media addiction are manifold. First of all, too much time on social media can lead to social isolation. We can become so fixated on our online lives that we neglect our real-life relationships. This can lead to feelings of loneliness and depression.
Second, social media addiction can cause us to compare our lives to the lives of others. We see perfect images of other peoples lives and start to believe that our own lives are not good enough. This can lead to feelings of envy, anxiety and low self-esteem.
Third, social media addiction can lead to problems with sleep. The blue light from screens suppresses the production of melatonin, the hormone that makes us feel sleepy. This means that we can find it harder to fall asleep at night and we can end up feeling tired and sluggish during the day.
Fourth, social media addiction can have an impact on our productivity. We can find ourselves wasting hours of our time scrolling through our feeds when we could be using that time to achieve our goals.
If your worried about a loved one or friend who you think has a social media addiction, try reading our How To Stage An Intervention For An Addict blog.
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Possible Solutions To Social Media Addiction Or: Decreasing Your Use Of Social Media
This is probably gonna be helpful, whether or not youre a full-fledged social media addict. Read on to protect yourself from addiction, or to combat addiction if its already gotten you.
The World Association for Social Psychiatry, shows us that under lockdown conditions, one plus one indeed equals two: in a special edition of their journal we come across an article with the revealing title:
Digital burnout COVID-19 Meditates Excessive Technology use Stress.
The authors of this article show how the use of digital technology has raised drastically in the first few months of 2020 in leisure time as well as for work and that this indeed has a direct effect on stress and burnout-related symptoms.
It seems obvious that finding balance in the way we use digital technology in general, and social media specifically, will be beneficial to most of us by far and especially those of us who are at risk of truly becoming addicts.
What can we do? How can we use technology and specifically social media less, and still feel a sense of connection?
What Are The Signs And Symptoms Of Social Media Addiction
Several signs indicate that someone may have an addiction to social media. The most common signs and symptoms of social media addiction are listed below.
- Lying about the amount of time spent online: Individuals who suffer from social media addiction are often embarrassed about the significant amount of time spent on social media. As a result, people who are addicted to social media will lie to loved ones about the time spent scrolling on different platforms.
- Relying on social media as a coping mechanism: A person may increasingly use social media to cope with problems or negative feelings such as boredom, social anxiety, stress, or loneliness.
- Feeling restless when unable to check social media: Individuals who struggle with social media addiction may become restless or troubled when unable to use social media. A person may be aware of the negative feelings that being unable to access social media can cause, but may often feel like the situation is uncontrollable.
- Neglecting school- or work-related responsibilities: As social media continues to consume a big chunk of a persons time and energy, school- or work-related responsibilities may be neglected.
- Withdrawing from friends and family: Personal relationships may suffer as a social media addict prefers to spend more time in the virtual world. A person may withdraw from family and friends, having difficulty staying in the moment as ones full attention is given to social media.
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Why Is Social Media So Addictive
Behavioral addictions have much the same effect on the brain as drugs and alcohol, and the same is no different for social media. For those who engage with social media apps on a regular basis, the process of scrolling and intaking images, posting and receiving positive affirmations from others, and other stimuli create the chemical dopamine in the brain. Dopamine reacts with neurotransmitters and creates feelings of pleasure and reward and causing the formation of âaddiction pathwaysâ in the brain that makes it hard to resist urges or stop the behavior.
The more you engage with social media and receive the rewarding dopamine hit it creates, the more your brain will seek it out to get another hit. This can lead to people using social media for longer periods of time in order to get the same feeling. This leads to a tolerance forming, where the required level of stimuli needed to get the same dopamine reaction increases. This tolerance can lead to dependence, where the user needs interaction with social media in order to feel normal. If left unchecked, the negative aspects of this dependence can lead to an addiction forming.
What Are The Negative Aspects Of Social Media
The negative aspects of social media include the risk for addiction, depression and anxiety, feelings of inadequacy about ones life or appearance, sleep disturbances, and fear of missing out , among many others.
All forms of social media addictions can negatively impact a persons physical and mental health. It is widely known that people who are addicted to social media also often deal with other mental health problems like depression and anxiety.
The highlights of a persons life posted on social media can also cause unrealistic expectations of life, leading someone to feel inadequate in many ways. Similarly, the facade seen in online platforms creates an anxious feeling that someone is missing out on something exciting or interesting that may already be happening to someone else.
Lastly, overusing social media hurts ones sleep quality. This can result in decreased productivity and poor concentration.
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The Brain Addiction And Withdrawal
As a consequence of drug addiction, the brain rewards the harmful behavior. It encourages drug addiction, keeping the individual in a cycle of highs and lows the user may feel like theyre on an emotional roller-coaster, feeling desperation and depression without their substance of abuse. Once someone suddenly stops using, there are harsh mental, physical, and emotional results. Individuals may experience distressing symptoms they cannot ignore for some substances withdrawal symptoms are generally stronger for some substances than others.
At the point of withdrawal, someone who stops using Heroin experiences intense cravings, depression, anxiety, and sweating. Much of this is due to the rewiring of the brain after extended Heroin use. In this stage, the individual may not have a full-blown addiction a tolerance or dependency may have developed, however. Over time, the high volume of chemicals floods the brain the brain correspondingly adapts to the mental effects of the substance. The brain then reduces its production of neurotransmitters, chemical messengers in the brain. Withdrawal symptoms often need professional treatment, which can significantly help reduce the chance of relapse and the risks of stroke and heart attack.
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Social Media In Daily Life
Social media use has become increasingly common in daily life, used by billions of people on a regular basis. While all age groups have a percentage of active social media users, not all of these cohorts use social media in the same way or to the same extent.
The Pew Research Center found that in 2021, a rapidly growing 81% of adults in the United States use YouTube on a regular basis, and Facebook continued to remain one of the most widely-used platforms with a usage rate of 69%.
Among young adults under the age of 30, Instagram, Snapchat, and TikTok were most widely used.
A 2019 study published in the European Journal of Communication analyzed how various life changes and circumstances could affect social media use in daily life. Researchers discovered that the most significant change in both the course of ones life as well as their social media usage habits came from having children.
Interestingly, they also analyzed the impact smartphones have on media use and found that there was an intimate connection between smartphone technology and the cognitive, physical, and emotional processes one experiences during life-disrupting events.
Having a social-media-ready smartphone available within arms reach every second of the day can have a tremendous impact on social media usage and usage habits.
The negative effects of social media may include social isolation, depression, low self-esteem, and lifestyle disruptions that may arise from excessive or unmitigated use.
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