While we’re still working to understand exactly how social media impacts our brains, we are already observing how it impacts our behaviors. Social media addiction is marked by spending enough time and effort on social media that it negatively impacts other areas of our life. Like with other addictions, the dopamine produced by engaging in social media can lead to positive or euphoric emotional states, but more engagement is needed over time to produce the same emotional effect, while being removed from accessing social media can lead to unpleasant physical and emotional symptoms. Children’s brains can be more susceptible to addictive triggers, causing extra vulnerability to social media apps that are designed to engage and trap our attention.
Are your kids addicted to Social Media? - A video Q&A with pediatrician and host Dr. Angela Mattke and Dr. Nusheen Ameenuddin, pediatrician and Chair of the Council on Communications and Media at American Academy Pediatrics about the effects of screens and social media on children and teens.