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How social media causes depression and what to do about it

Social media can be a breeding ground for negativity.

Social media can cause depression [Medium]

Let's talk about something real. We all know social media is a big part of our lives these days. Scrolling through Instagram, catching up on Twitter trends, or staying connected with friends and family on Facebook – it's all there at our fingertips.

But have you ever noticed how sometimes after spending a chunk of time online, you might feel a bit… down? Social media, while it has its perks, can sometimes negatively affect our mood.

Here's the thing, social media is all about highlights. People tend to post the best bits of their lives – the dazzling vacations, the banging outfits, the perfectly lit dinners. It's easy to get sucked into this highlight reel and start comparing our everyday lives to someone else's "perfection."

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This constant comparison can chip away at our self-esteem, making us feel inadequate or like we're missing out, which we call FOMO (fear of missing out).

Social media can also be a breeding ground for negativity. We've all seen unkind comments, cyberbullying, or even just endless bickering in online spaces. Exposure to negativity can bring us down, especially if we're already feeling a bit low.

Now, before you ditch your phone and retreat to a cave (although a digital detox can be a good thing sometimes), let's talk about how to use social media in a way that protects your mental well-being.

You have control over what content you see. Unfollow accounts that make you feel bad about yourself or constantly bombard you with negativity.

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Instead, follow people who inspire you, motivate you, or just make you laugh. Support your friends and family online, and seek out positive content creators who reflect your interests.

Most social media platforms allow you to mute or even hide content from certain people or keywords. Use this to your advantage! If you're struggling with body image, maybe mute those fitness accounts that constantly focus on achieving a certain look.

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Feeling overwhelmed by the news cycle? Hide posts with triggering keywords. Your feed should be a space that lifts you up, not brings you down.

Social media is designed to be addictive, but it's important to step away sometimes. Set yourself time limits for each app, or even dedicate certain times of the day to be completely phone-free. This allows you to focus on real-life interactions and activities that bring you joy.

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Social media is just a small snapshot of someone's life. Don't get caught up in comparing your behind-the-scenes reality to someone else's highlight reel. Instead, focus on what makes you unique and awesome. Spend time on things you enjoy, whether it's hanging out with friends, learning a new skill, or simply relaxing with a good book.

Social media is a tool for connection, but it shouldn't replace real-life relationships. Make time to see your friends and family face-to-face. Have genuine conversations, share real laughter, and build meaningful connections.

Social media can worsen feelings of depression or anxiety. If you're constantly feeling down, hopeless, or unmotivated, it's important to seek help. Talk to a trusted friend, family member, or a counsellor. There's absolutely no shame in getting professional help for your mental health.

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Social media can be a great tool, but be aware of its potential downsides. By being mindful of what you see, taking breaks, and focusing on real-life connections, we can use social media in a way that supports our mental wellbeing, not hinders it.

This content was created with the help of an AI model and verified by the writer.

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