Higher depression levels in girls linked to social media

Higher levels of depression in girls has been linked to their use of social media; an online safety expert has offered her advice

As reported by The Guardian last Friday, depression in girls has been linked to higher use of social media.

It appears that cyber-bullying, low self-esteem and reduced sleep are partly to blame for the numbers of depressed girls being higher than boys.

Adele Abbiss, an online safety expert at Smoothwall, has responded to this news, stating that the public and healthcare professionals alike must join forces and educate on the risks associated with excessive uses of social media.

Online safety expert, Adele Abbiss at Smoothwall on why we must all join forces and come together to educate on the risks associated with the excessive use of social media.

“The link that girls suffering from mental health and wellbeing issues spend more time on social media is not something to ignore.

“Some of the most serious issues such as depression and anxiety are often a direct response to what is happening on social media, and with the younger generation becoming increasingly savvy online, we must educate them on the risks involved in order to use it safely.

“As technology and social media become ever more ubiquitous among young people, the issues associated with mental health and wellbeing will only continue to rise. This means early intervention is vital.

“What needs to be done to protect children’s online experience is for all forces to come together and educate on the risks associated with the excessive use of social media.

“However, it’s important to remember that not everything on the internet is damaging – the majority of content online is hugely beneficial and educational.

“Addressing the problem early will be essential in ensuring that children are not only educated on the risks and dangers associated with social media and mental health, but that schools also have the tools to help reduce the impact.

“Responsibility needs to be not only in the hands of the social media companies but with schools, parents and the government. We must all teach children how to engage appropriately and use social media in a safe way that does not endanger their mental health.

“The problem will not fix itself overnight, but by working together we can all play our part to drive positive change.”

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