The Connection Between Facebook and Teen Depression

Parents of teens are well aware of the dangers that lurk online, which can compromise safety or kids owing to potential predators and the problems that can arise out of theft of personal information and identity. In particularly social networking sites and chat rooms present such problems.

Another potential problem that parents have to contend with is Facebook Depression. It is also something that doctors are warning parents about. Rather than a separate condition, some doctors feel that it is something that exacerbates the condition of an already troubled teen.

However some experts feel that it is certain distinct features of Facebook that make kids with low self-esteem particularly susceptible to depression and similar problems.

Facebook shows clearly the number of friends a person has, clever updates and status messages that members put up, as well as the response others give to these; plus there are photos that people put up, which are typically flattering or show them having fun – all of these factors can make a child with already low self-esteem feel worse.

What is also a problem is that certain visual cues such as body language or facial expressions; and other things that provide clues as to context are absent which is why it can make a child feel even more down.

Facebook users can relate to the problems presented to others even if they themselves may not suffer as a result of it – Facebook is a sort of popularity contest – as popular kids in school can make the unpopular ones feel insignificant, so it is with Facebook.

The number of people who comment on your pictures, like your status, tag you in their photos and so on can indicate popularity.

Plus online harassment can result in profound psychosocial consequences that parents are warned, and so it becomes all the more important to make kids aware of potential online problems such as cyberbullying, sexting, other online risks, and now Facebook depression as well.


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