Over the last 20 years, social media has risen from relative obscurity to become a fully accepted and integrated part of everyday life. However, despite social media’s ubiquity, the research on how it affects mental health remains inconclusive.
There’s a popular belief – shared by a lot of social scientists – that more time spent on social media and smart phones correlates to worse mental health – especially in young people. But University of Pittsburgh social worker and postdoctoral researcher Craig Sewall says most of those studies contain a fatal flaw that undermines the whole premise of social media causing depression and anxiety.
Self-reported screen time guesstimates skew "digital media use" research data.
Most studies of screen time rely on self-reported data. That’s a problem, says a new study in Nature Human Behaviour.