Despite the convenience of full time online connection, it is likely causing youth extra stress and fatigue.
According to Dr. Bratt of the Academy of Clinical and Applied Psychoanalysis, social media like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram can wear people out because of its continually updating nature. Notifications pour in at all hours of the day and night, and the fear of missing out creates a false sense of urgency among users. Absorbing all of the information can make a person feel overwhelmed, and over time this leads to anxiety and trouble sleeping.
Further research in the Journal of Youth Studies recently analyzed the night-time activities of school children ranging from 12 to 15 years old; specifically how often they were checking messages on social media. In the study, 20 percent of subjects said that they ‘almost always’ woke up in the middle of the night to check their accounts. These same students were three times more likely to say that they were tired during school and were also not as happy, on average, as the rest of the children. Researchers at San Diego State University have shown that this reduction in quality sleep can lead to lowered performance in school because students are not able to concentrate and pay attention as easily.
A recent study from the Council on Communications and Media found that social media can also trigger negative emotions that can lead to a lowered sense of well-being, jealousy, and perceived social isolation. This isolation has even caused what some researchers have dubbed ‘Facebook depression’ because of how teens and tweens have been shown to exhibit the classic symptoms of depression after spending a considerable amount of time on the site. Depression can lead to other health issues including a lack of sleep and fatigue.