Research shows: a week without social media is good for your mental health

Of course we don’t like to hear it, but it has once again been proven that social media really has a bad influence on our mental health. Or at least, quitting social media has a positive effect. And let’s face it: with everything that’s happening in the world and how easily we get it through social media, that’s actually understandable.

Doom scrolling

It is sometimes called “doomscrolling”: endlessly scrolling through your timeline or news sites in search of bad news. Even if it only makes you feel worse. The algorithms have that too and only give you more of that kind of content. You end up in a kind of depressing spiral of bad news on social media. The University of Bath conducted research into the influence of a week without social media on your mental health. The conclusion was that this certainly has advantages.

depression and anxiety from social media doomscrolling

Taking a break from social media

For the study, they took 154 social media users between the ages of 18 and 72. They ended up in one of two groups: one group was allowed to do what they wanted, the others were not allowed to use social media for a week. At the beginning, questions were asked about depression, anxiety and general (mental) health.

During the study, the participants were always required to show the data of their screen time. The result of the investigation? After one week, there was an improvement in symptoms of anxiety and depression in those who did not use social media. The participants also generally felt better. Now, of course, the big question is whether taking breaks from social media can also make you feel better in the longer term. To this end, the university team wants to conduct further research.

Do you feel that the things you do on social media have a negative impact on your mental health? Then it can be good to stay away from Facebook, Twitter and Instagram for a week.

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