What is social media?
Social media is usually referred to as the online platform where people from all over the world connect with each other. Facebook, Twitter, are the top social media platform where billions of people make daily connections with each other.
Usually, these are used to send messages, chats, or entertainment purposes.
How many people use social media
Billions of people have a presence on social media. From young to adults people all use these types of platforms.
According to the most trusted collected data in 2020, 3.6 billion people were active on their social accounts. Expert is expecting a huge rise as they believe in 2025 social media may have 4.41 billion active users. (1)
Why is social media bad for health?
Social Media is providing a lot of opportunities by making the connection easy between people. Many companies are running their business through these platforms. But there are some serious downgrades linked with them. To avoid them you may need to spend less or needed time online.
Social media craze and health risks
Here are some of the disadvantages of using too much social media and an explanation about how your daily long routine of spending time there can put your health at risk:
Can lead you to get ill
A sedentary lifestyle or rest friendly routine is the root of health issues.
After studying and researching many years in finding the link between a sedentary lifestyle and diseases, experts conclude that high numbers of chronic diseases risks can be increased several times with that type of unhealthy lifestyle.
Usually, a common person spends 7 hours per day scrolling on social media. People use these platforms while sitting or lying for several hours. Staying in these positions for many hours can increase obesity, hypertension, diabetes, cancer, and many other health risks. (2)
Studies say that high social media usage has contributed to making people rest-friendly. Due to social media people have become lazy and they avoid physical activities as their rest time has increased. (2)
Especially on holidays or non-workdays people usually become obese due to their increased involvement in online activities, like on social platforms. Obesity can cause serious health trouble. (2)
Another research has concluded that high online social engagement keeps a person mostly inactive and increases the possibilities of several chronic diseases. (3)
[su_quote]Social media can be called one of the top depression causing factors in the general population[/su_quote]
Keep visiting or checking the social posts or activities frequently Not just put adults' health in danger but can cause serious harm to the children's health.
Children who spend more time on “Facebook” or related networks where harsh and inappropriate material is available, can make them go depressed, embarrassed, or may lead to cause mental issues medical research says. (4)
People who use social remain in risky health conditions as compared to those who are less or have no engagement on social networks. (3)(2)
Sad, violent, or inappropriate photos or videos can cause a serious disturbance that may lead a person to go depressed. Moreover, its usage can make a person addicted to it. (4) (3)
Can cost you fitness
Being engaged in social media can make your fitness graph lower towards the bottom level. You can lose your health & fitness in very little time. People ignore the exercise or other needs for fitness just to give time to their online activities.
Obesity which can create a terrible effect on personal fitness and user who spend 7 hours per day while sitting is much likely to catch it.
According to studies, most Australians give 7 hours per day to their social media engagement and an expert says due to it obesity rate is going up at a dangerous speed. Many other chronic health and fitness issues are developing in children and adults mainly due to their least physical activeness because of the high use of social media. (2)(3)(1)
There were days when a parent pulls their children from the grounds to the house but now they push their children from the bed or chair towards the ground to play.
[su_quote]Time has significantly changed and has become fast[/su_quote]
Researchers analyze that people who spend less time on social media usually give more time to health and fitness-friendly activities. Thus they face fewer health issues as compared to those who are addicted to these networks. (5)
People usually give much time to their online activities and they ignore their other's physical needs.
May lead to eyes damage
Almost all types of electronics that can be used for social sites have screens, computers, laptops, and smartphones screens are some famous examples.
According to medical data spending, high time on the computer or mobile screen cause many issues related to vision or eye health. Eyestrain, redness, blurred vision, irritation, tired eyes, double vision, or weak eye vision issues are very common in those who use or spend most of their time in front of a computer or smartphone. (12)
Using smartphones especially in dark areas can further increase eyes diseases many times. That is why experts don't recommend people to read on smartphones or on computers in dark areas. (14)
Just 30 minutes of smartphone users can increase the possibility of a person getting recommended sunglasses. (13)
Not just your eyes but screens of these electronics can be problematic for your sleep and may lead to other related issues as well. (14)
May affect mental health
Many studies, researches, and surveys reported that social platforms are the main cause of promoting the hike of mental diseases. Because a general person is highly active on those platforms which are why mental issues are rising at a high pace.
There is much material found on social platforms which can be inappropriate for many to watch or discuss.
[su_quote]Many people get depressed when they don't get others attention like not getting followers or likes can put a general user of Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn in some serious stress which can be a bad companion for mental health[/su_quote]
Can make you obese
Most people spend their time on social media in a sedentary position. Sedentary means being inactive or in a restless position. Sitting and laying is the best position for online users to perform their activities. They usually spend hours and ignore the health needs of their body.
Like people who are highly active online, researchers say they spend less time on physical activities or exercises. Rest-friendly life and zero or less engagement to exercise can increase the risks of getting obese or overweight at dangerous levels.
May lead to financial loss
Keeping yourself highly active on social sites can make you abandon or ignore the job works, needs, or opportunities. A lot of people do not give proper needed attention to their work mainly to their craze for social activeness.
Not giving proper needed time to your business, work, job or related financial matters can lead to damage your financial status.
[su_quote]Social media sites are helping many businesses to promote their work to the general population but a lot of users are also active being wasting their time just being addicted[/su_quote]
It promotes stress
Stress plays a very important role in deteriorating mental and overall health. It can raise blood pressure, can make or improve your mental symptoms to the worst level. Many mental problems or disorders possibilities can be increased in those who usually live in stressed environments. (9)
Scientists found that social sites are highly responsible for causing stress. Stress due to social sites is known as social media-induced stress which can also disrupt sleep and may lead to further health problems. (9)
In a survey of 1441 adult children (11-15 age group) experts find stress as one of the main outcomes of high social media engagement. They also found that children which were highly active on these platforms not only rains at high-stress risks but their sleep pattern, quality was not also good or stable for health-friendly requirements. (9)
Not just for general use but those whose job depends on social sites face highly dangerous health risks due to being on the brink of getting affected by stress-related factors studies say. (10)
Usually most popular social platforms like Facebook, Twitter works very well in promoting stressful events which is why stress-related incidents increase in those who use or are active there. (11)
High depression and anxiety risks
Too much use of social media is highly linked with the possibility of depression and anxiety. People who spend most of their daily time on different social platforms face severe depression and anxiety symptoms as compared to those whose engagement is less. (6)
A survey in which experts monitor the mental health of 1787 young Americans found that those who were highly active on different social platforms face serious depression, anxiety, and related symptoms, and those who were less active face fewer risks. (6)
Studies and surveys also conclude that those who use 7-11 social platforms are more likely dangerous mental issues whereas those who have 0-2 platform engagement were mostly not affected by these risks. (6)
Most social media platform users are adults and a medical expert says these platforms are playing a bad role in increasing mental illnesses or related cases. (7)
In the conclusion of research in which scientists examine the effect of social sites on Indian young people, experts have explained that craze or high use of these sites is making young generation depressed, lazy, fatigue, and cause other mental health problems for them. (7)
Especially during the corona pandemic, social sites play a negative role in increasing the hype of coronavirus.
A study on the Chinese population found that too much coverage of coronavirus and presenting the bad image on social platforms makes the increased prevalence of depression and anxiety cases in the general population. (8)
[su_quote]Sad incidents are extensively promoted on these platforms, which put a negative effect on mental health[/su_quote]
Can cut your connections
Another bad thing social media can do is it can cut or limited your physical connections with others. When you will spend most of your time on social media then you may give less attention to your relations like family, friends, or people you know and love.
Social media is playing a very bad role in cutting people's physical links.
In the past when people travel to a place then they chat a lot and spend their traveling time interacting with each other.
In today's modern world everything has changed and now instead of interacting with each other, people usually ignore each other while keeping busy on their phones. Expert says during the non-work time most people spend their time on social media. (1)
[su_quote]It is also a fact that social media helps to increase the connections but these connections usually remain at the screen level, and it does not provide relief which physical presence can give or support[/su_quote]
May shortened your life
Too much online engagement can lead you to live a rest-friendly life and can make you unhealthy or unfit.
An unhealthy person can become the root of diseases and chronic issues like cardiovascular issues, cancer, high blood pressure, diabetes, and related severe diseases risks can multiply many times for them.
Medical research says a person who lives an unhealthy lifestyle usually dies early due to being affected by serious health issues. Whereas a healthy lifestyle leads to the possibility of getting a long lifetime.
Social media is playing a crucial role in connecting people. It is promoting business and providing help to people for jobs or for living. Essential usage can provide benefits while too much craze without any purpose may not be good for everyone.
So it can be very helpful and healthy for you if you keep your social engagement frequency in limit or according to your work needs. Also, keep eye on your child's online activity as there is much more material present their which may lead them towards damage.
- Statista - https://www.statista.com/statistics/278414/number-of-worldwide-social-network-users/
- https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/27795223/ Impact of increasing social media use on sitting time and body mass index
- https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1532046413000671 Health outcomes and related effects of using social media in chronic disease management: A literature review and analysis of affordances
- https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1111/jpc.13023 Impact of social media on the health of children and young people
- https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6604510/ Associations of Social Media Use With Physical Activity and Sleep Adequacy Among Adolescents: Cross-Sectional Survey
- https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0747563216307543 Use of multiple social media platforms and symptoms of depression and anxiety: A nationally-representative study among U.S. young adults
- https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0268401217310629 Online social media fatigue and psychological wellbeing—A study of compulsive use, fear of missing out, fatigue, anxiety and depression
- https://link.springer.com/article/10.1186/s12889-020-09738-7 Gender differences of depression and anxiety among social media users during the COVID-19 outbreak in China:a cross-sectional study
- https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/10410236.2017.1422101 Social Media Use, Social Media Stress, and Sleep: Examining Cross-Sectional and Longitudinal Relationships in Adolescents
- https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/1369118x.2012.710245 THE STRESS POTENTIAL OF SOCIAL MEDIA IN THE WORKPLACE
- https://hcsi.cs.tsinghua.edu.cn/Paper/Paper16/IJCAI-linhuijie.pdf What Does Social Media Say about Your Stress?
- https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0039625705000093 Computer Vision Syndrome: A Review
- https://www.nature.com/articles/s41598-019-55406-1 Effect of Smartphone Use on Intraocular Pressure
- https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0003687017302351 Symptoms associated with reading from a smartphone in conditions of light and dark
- Sleep quality as a mediator of problematic smartphone use and clinical health symptoms https://akjournals.com/view/journals/2006/7/2/article-p466.xml