The Hazards of Getting the Wrong Mental Health Diagnosis

Social media can be a great tool with which to stay in touch with family and friends. However, social media also has a dark side with the power to adversely affect the mental and physical health of anyone who uses one of the platforms. Social media exploits the natural human need for validation and its being used by everyone from influencers and marketers to some celebrities.

Fear of Missing Out

Through overt and subtle messaging, individuals are being made to feel “less than,” leading to the fear of missing out (FOMO). While FOMO isn’t a diagnosable mental health condition, it does result in social anxiety and depression. The “likes” on social media are a form of affirmation that has a connection to addiction, sadness, low self-worth, frustration and loneliness.

Subverting Reality

It’s difficult for people to determine what’s real, what’s fake, and what’s staged on social media. The situation is being further complicated by the use of staged images and artificial intelligence (AI). It’s detrimental to adult mental health and the effects are even more insidious for youngsters who compare themselves to others on social media.

Pleasure Centers and Addictive Behavior

Social media platforms are addictive and designed to be so. They activate the reward center of the brain, replicating the pleasurable sensation that accompanies social interactions, sex, a good meal or alcohol. An estimated 69 percent of adults and teens use social media each day, increasing the risk of mental health disorders. The allure of social media is similar to that of a gambling addiction.

The Search for Positive Feedback

People need positive reinforcement in their life. That’s typically achieved through personal interaction, but people are becoming more isolated in today’s world. Social media is conducive to that trend.

Help is Available

Breaking the cycle of social media addiction is every bit as difficult as that of substance abuse or gambling. A therapist is invaluable in helping individuals deal with the negative feelings and harmful physical effects that social media use produces.

 

Southcoast Psychiatric Services

Are you struggling with anxiety, depression, feelings of hopelessness, relationship problems, or other pressures of life? Don’t suffer in silence. The doctors and therapists of Southcoast Psychiatric Services can help. Caring, compassionate, and completely confidential, our services are provided by highly-experienced, licensed, and board-certified healthcare professionals, dedicated to improving your health and wellness.

Whether you require medical treatment, counseling/psychotherapy, or both, we are happy to offer the best care available – at your convenience.

Call us anytime @ (561) 241-6628 Because you don’t have to suffer in silence.