To many, social media accounts are a way to take a break from the hustle-bustle of the day. To even more, they are about connecting with people they know or with a huge audience from around the world. But all is not flowers and pastries when it comes to social networking; avenues like Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, and Twitter can have a negative influence on the wellbeing of people.
This is because the picture-posting culture has people jealous of one another and competing with each other. Social media also leads to depression among people as some try to keep up with it while others become aware that they just cannot.
A new study shows the effects that social media channels have specifically on the people who live in developing countries. As per this study, Indonesia is suffering negative impacts in the mental health department due to social media usage.
What Did This New Report Reveal?
A new report from the University of Manchester has found that social media is making people’s mental health suffer in Indonesia. While it has already been noted that social media usage can have detrimental impacts on the mental health of people on a global level, this study zooms in on the effects that these social networks have on the mental wellbeing of people who live in developing countries.
This paper reveals that the economic inequalities in a country such as Indonesia are exhibited through social media which causes feelings of envy and resentment among people who view other people’s happy images. The third-fastest growing country economically among the G20 nations has seen a rise in consumer class since 2000 but this still means that people who are unemployed or uneducated are not financially doing well.
Moreover, the conflicts, crimes, poverty, and corruption going on in the country are also projected on social media which provides people little to no escape through social channels. For the purpose of this research, the scientists involved studied 22,423 individuals from 300 districts of Indonesia. Particularly, the effects of Facebook, Twitter, and chat were looked at.
These two social networks are very popular in the country and along with it, the numbers of people who are dealing with mental illness are also growing. Researcher Gindo Tampubolon, who was part of this study, said, “We would like to see public health officials think creatively about how we can encourage citizens to take a break from social media or be aware of the negative consequences it can have on mental health.”
How to Reduce Social Media Addiction
One should not be fooled by the glitzy and glamourous world of social media. The global issue of Facebooking and Instagramming having adverse impacts of mental wellbeing sheds light on the need to abstain from these social networks as much as possible. In this regard, it is necessary to set boundaries.
This can be done by logging out of social channels from your phone. Keeping a check on your app usage. Entirely powering off from social media usage over the weekends or when on a vacation. Notifications of apps that are not absolutely important should also be silenced.