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May 30, 2018

The Risks and Benefits of Social Media on the Mental Health of Adolescents

Dr Jon Goldin
Dr Jon Goldin FRC Psych is a Consultant in Child and Adolescent Psychiatry at Great Ormond Street Hospital and an Honorary Senior Lecturer at the Institute of Child Health....

The Internet and social media now impact almost every aspect of people’s lives and have altered social interactions and ways of being. Many young people use the Internet and social media in a way that is detrimental to their mental health, with the potential of developing symptoms traditionally associated with addiction. Despite this desperation to use the Internet and social media, a recent study showed that the more time young people spend on social media, the less happy they feel about everything except their friendships. More specifically, they felt less happy about school and school work, their appearance, their family, and life in general. It appears that girls are more affected than boys. It is important however that we don’t blame the medium but the message. There are positive messages out there on social media, which can help young people with mental health difficulties but also some very harmful messages and practices can be found online too. This talk will explore ‘The risks and benefits of social media on the mental health of adolescents’.