Spending time in social networks increases a sense of loneliness and causes depression, according to new research published in the Journal of Social and Clinical Psychology. The main reason the depression on which the networks are pushing us is a "subconscious comparison" with the lives of other users.
143 students actively participated in the experiment, which was the basis for work Facebook, Instagram and snapchatFirst, the researchers conducted a survey to determine the mood and well-being of volunteers, as well as measured the average time of their presence on social networks using the statistics provided by the iPhone & # 39;
Then the students were divided into two groups. In the first, which served as a control group, the students devoted themselves to social networks as long as usualMembers of the second group, the experimental group, did not use more than ten minutes day in each social network. The experiment was ongoing three weeks.
After the experiment, psychologists prepared a special questionnaire for volunteers with seven indicators: social support, fear of isolation from the environment, loneliness, anxiety, depression, self-esteem and self-acceptance.
Well, this study confirms loneliness and depression depend directly the time we spend on social networks. In addition, all members of the experimental group demonstrated fewer depressive symptoms than members of the control group.
One of the authors of the work, Melissa G. Hunt, says that "less attention to social networks makes us feel less alone."