Public places today are mostly filled with people who have their heads down for a long period of time, looking in their phones or smart devices. Too much of anything is bad for you, and social media is one of those things that impact your health.
Instagram and Snapchat are the social media platforms that have the worst impact on children’s mental health, according to a study published by Royal Society for Public Health (RSPH) and the Young Health Movement (YHM).
The report — released on Friday and titled #StatusOfMind — justified the positive and negative effects of social media on young people’s health.
The survey included about 1,500 children in the UK, between ages 14-24.
The study found that YouTube had the most positive impact, while Instagram and Snapchat were the most detrimental to young people’s mental health and well-being.
Here’s a ranking of the big five platforms:
- Instagram (most negative)
- YouTube (most positive)
Shirley Cramer, CEO of RSPH, said in a statement that social media has been described as more addictive than cigarettes and alcohol.
“It’s interesting to see Instagram and Snapchat ranking as the worst for mental health and wellbeing – both platforms are very image-focused and it appears they may be driving feelings of inadequacy and anxiety in young people,” she said.
RSPH and YHM now want the UK government and social media firms to mitigate the potential negative aspects of social media for young people, while promoting the positive ones.