Poverty linked to addiction to Facebook and Instagram in adolescents

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Adolescents from low-income backgrounds are more likely to report addictive use of social media, according to an international team of researchers including Professor Frank Elgar of McGill University.

The findings show a link between economic inequality and problematic use of social media platforms and instant messaging apps. Researchers identified problematic social media use in adolescents who reported six or more addiction-like behaviors, including feeling bad when not using social media, trying to spend less time using social media without success, and using social media to escape feelings. negatives.

The situation is worse in schools where differences in wealth between peers are greater. The authors say the results, based on more than 179,000 schoolchildren in 40 countries, suggest that new strategies are needed in the use of social networks that promote ways to disconnect. Action by policymakers could help limit harmful behavior by young people, the authors add. These negative patterns include not being able to reduce screen time or lying to friends and family about using social media.

“Can an Egalitarian World Reduce Problematic Social Media Use? Evidence from the Study on Health Behavior in School-Age Children in 43 Countries,” by Michela Lenzi, Frank Elgar et al., was published in Information, Communication and Society.

More information:
Michela Lenzi et al, Can an egalitarian world reduce problematic social media use? Evidence from the Health Behavior in School-aged Children study in 43 countries, Information, Communication and Society (2022). DOI: 10.1080/1369118X.2022.2109981

Provided by McGill University

Citation: Poverty Linked to Facebook and Instagram Addiction in Adolescents (November 29, 2022) Retrieved November 29, 2022 from https://phys.org/news/2022-11-poverty-linked-facebook-instagram-addiction .html

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