Don't Blame Technology for Young People's Mood Problems: Study
TUESDAY, Sept. 10, 2019 -- Spending time on their phones or online doesn't harm teens' mental health, according to a new study that challenges a widely held belief.
"It may be time for adults to stop arguing over whether smartphones and social media are good or bad for teens' mental health and start figuring out ways to best support them in both their offline and online lives," said study co-author Candice Odgers. She's a professor of psychological science at the University of California, Irvine (UCI).
For the study, researchers surveyed more than 2,000 10- to 15-year-olds at public schools in North Carolina and tracked nearly 400 of them on their smartphones for two weeks.
The young people reported on any mental health symptoms three times a day, as well as their daily digital technology use.
Neither using more types of digital technology or spending more time using it was associated with worse mental health, the researchers found.
When links between digital technology use and mental health were found, they were minor and positive, according to the report.
For example, participants who sent more text messages reported feeling better than those who texted less often, the findings showed.
"Contrary to the common belief that smartphones and social media are damaging adolescents' mental health, we don't see much support for the idea that time spent on phones and online is associated with increased risk for mental health problems," study co-author Michaeline Jensen said in a UCI news release. Jensen is an assistant professor of psychology at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro.
The report was published online recently in the journal Clinical Psychological Science.
© 2020 HealthDay. All rights reserved.
Posted: September 2019
Read this next
THURSDAY, Oct. 29, 2020 -- You might be onto something if you suspect your mental and physical health declined during the COVID-19 lockdown earlier this year. Stay-at-home orders...
THURSDAY, Oct. 29, 2020 -- Many women have depression symptoms after giving birth, but for some postpartum depression hangs on for years, a U.S. government study finds. Of nearly...
WEDNESDAY, Oct. 28, 2020 -- If you're the parent of a teen, you had plenty to deal with before the pandemic began -- dramatic sighs, slamming doors, eye-rolling -- and that was...
More News Resources
- FDA Medwatch Drug Alerts
- Daily MedNews
- News for Health Professionals
- New Drug Approvals
- New Drug Applications
- Drug Shortages
- Clinical Trial Results
- Generic Drug Approvals
- Monthly Update Archive
Subscribe to our Newsletter
Whatever your topic of interest, subscribe to our newsletters to get the best of Drugs.com in your inbox.