A number of studies have by now correlated social media use with mental-health risks, such as loneliness and depression. But correlation isn’t causation, leaving a bit of a chicken-and-egg problem: Is social media actually behind these issues, or are people who are already depressed and lonely just more likely to spend time on social media?
“Here’s the bottom line,” Hunt told Science Daily. “Using less social media than you normally would leads to significant decreases in both depression and loneliness. These effects are particularly pronounced for folks who were more depressed when they came into the study.”