STOCK MARKET BSE NSE

Social media negatively affects teen girls more than boys, finds research

The authors found that adolescent girls used social media more than boys and social media interaction increased with age for both boys and girls.

Published: 20th March 2018 10:10 AM  |   Last Updated: 20th March 2018 10:10 AM   |  A+A-

Image used for representational purpose.

By ANI

WASHINGTON: Social media use may have different effects on wellbeing in adolescent boys and girls, according to a recent research.

Researchers at the University of Essex and UCL found an association between increased time spent on social media in early adolescence (age 10) and reduced wellbeing in later adolescence (age 10-15) - but only among girls.

Corresponding author Cara Booker said, "Our findings suggest that it is important to monitor early interactions with social media, particularly in girls, as this could have an impact on wellbeing later in adolescence and perhaps throughout adulthood."

The authors found that adolescent girls used social media more than boys and social media interaction increased with age for both boys and girls. At age 13, about a half of girls were interacting on social media for more than 1 hour per day, compared to just one third of boys. By age 15, both genders increased their social media use but girls continued to use social media more than boys, with 59% of girls and 46% of boys interacting on social media for one or more hours per day.

Wellbeing appeared to decline throughout adolescence in both boys and girls, as reflected in scores for happiness and other aspects of wellbeing. Booker said: "Since we did not observe an association between social media use and wellbeing among boys, other factors, such as the amount of time spent gaming, might be associated with the boys' observed decline in wellbeing."

The study used data from the youth panel of the UK Household Panel Study - a large national survey which interviews all members of a household annually, from 2009 - 2015. A total of 9,859 UK adolescents aged 10 to 15 years completed questions on how many hours they spent interacting on social media sites on a typical school day. 

The authors found that throughout adolescence happiness scores dropped nearly three points from 36.9 to 33.3 in girls and two points from 36.02 to 34.55 in boys. While SDQ scores dropped for boys and increased for girls, indicating that girls experienced more negative aspects of wellbeing, the researchers concluded that overall wellbeing decreased for both.

The authors caution that because the study used the self-report data and only social media interactions on school days were recorded, the associations between social media and wellbeing may have been underestimated.

The study is published in the open access journal BMC Public Health.

Stay up to date on all the latest Health news with The New Indian Express App. Download now

Comments

Disclaimer : We respect your thoughts and views! But we need to be judicious while moderating your comments. All the comments will be moderated by the newindianexpress.com editorial. Abstain from posting comments that are obscene, defamatory or inflammatory, and do not indulge in personal attacks. Try to avoid outside hyperlinks inside the comment. Help us delete comments that do not follow these guidelines.

The views expressed in comments published on newindianexpress.com are those of the comment writers alone. They do not represent the views or opinions of newindianexpress.com or its staff, nor do they represent the views or opinions of The New Indian Express Group, or any entity of, or affiliated with, The New Indian Express Group. newindianexpress.com reserves the right to take any or all comments down at any time.

flipboard facebook twitter whatsapp