A new study, published in the journal Clinical Psychological Science suggests that adolescents' time spent on their phones and online is not bad. Test whether more time spent using digital technology has been linked to worse mental health outcomes. Researchers – Candice Odgers, professor of psychological science at the University of California, Irvine; Michaeline Jensen, assistant professor of psychology at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro; Madeleine George, postdoctoral researcher at Purdue University; and Michael Russell, assistant professor of behavioral health at Pennsylvania State University – found little evidence of long-term or daily linkages between the use of digital technology and mental health of young people.
"It may be time for adults to stop arguing over whether smartphones and social media are good or bad for young people's mental health and are beginning to think of ways to best support them both. their offline and online life, "Odgers said.
"Contrary to the common belief that smartphones and social media are detrimental to young people's health, we do not see much support for the idea that time spent on phones and online is associated with higher rates. risk for mental health problems, "Jensen said.
The study surveyed more than 2,000 youth and then intensively monitored a subsample of about 400 youths on their smartphones several times a day for two weeks. Adolescents in the study are between 10 and 15 years of age and represent the economically and racially diverse youth population attending North Carolina public schools.
Researchers collected reports of mental health symptoms from adolescents three times a day and also reported on their daily use of the technology every night. They asked whether young people who are more focused on digital technologies are more likely to experience mental health symptoms and if the days young people spend more time using digital technology for a wide range That set of goals is also days when mental health problems are more common. In both cases, the increased use of digital technology is not associated with worse mental health.
When the associations are observed, they are small and in the other direction are expected to be given all the recent concerns about digital technology that are detrimental to the mental health of young people. . For example, adolescents who reported sending more text messages during the study actually reported feeling better (less depressed) than adolescents who were less frequent Texts. . . Note: Content can be edited for style and length.