Two recent studies shed light on the effects of heavy social media use and multi-tasking. Both are not really flattering, but should be considered in everyday life and the education of children.
Social media study
Researchers at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, USA, were interested in the association between social media use and depression. The study included 1,787 adults ages 19 to 32 and assessed their social media behavior (Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, Google+, Instagram…). The researchers found that participants with heavy social media use had an increased risk of depression. They were up to 2.7 times more likely to suffer from depression.
“Because social media has become such an integrated component of human interaction, it is important for clinicians interacting with young adults to recognize the balance to be struck in encouraging potential positive use, while redirecting from problematic use,” concluded Brian A. Primack, M.D., Ph.D., author of the study.
The study (University of Toronto) was published in the “Psychonomic Bulletin & Review” and had the purpose to find out if multi-tasking has an effect on cognitive performance. 73 students from Boston were included in the study. Multi-tasking such as the combination of watching TV or videos, listening to music, playing video games, reading electronic media, talking on the phone and text messaging was assessed by questionnaires. Cognitive performance was assessed by standardized achievement tests. The study authors concluded: “More media multitasking was associated with poorer executive function ability, worse academic achievement, and a reduced growth mindset.”
Well, since you are reading this article on our social media platform, we both should consider these finding…;) However, both studies didn’t focus on the type of content.