Thursday October 17, 2019

Cyber Bullying Leads to Depression in Teenagers, Says Study

The study was scheduled to be presented at "SLEEP 2019" conference in Texas from June 8-12

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Depression is a major issue affecting millions of people, especially the teenagers. Pixabay

Parents, please take note. Teenagers who experience cyber bullying are more likely to suffer from poor sleep and depression, warns a study.

In one of the few studies to explore the connection between cyber victimisation and sleep quality, the research team from University at Buffalo examined the relationship between online bullying and depression among over 800 adolescents.

“Cyber victimisation on the Internet and social media is a unique form of peer victimisation and an emerging mental health concern among teenagers who are digital natives,” said Misol Kwon, a PhD student from University at Buffalo.

Nearly 15 percent of US high school students report being bullied electronically, said Kwon.

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Depression is among the leading causes of disability in the U.S. and is being closely monitored by health authorities amid rising suicides nationwide. Pixabay

At severe levels, depression may lead to disrupted school performance, harmed relationships or even suicide.

According to the US Office of Adolescent Health, nearly one third of teenagers have experienced symptoms of depression, which, in addition to changes in sleep pattern, include persistent irritability, anger and social withdrawal.

Also Read- Telegram Updates its App with a New Design

“Understanding these associations supports the need to provide sleep hygiene education and risk prevention and interventions to mistreated kids who show signs and symptoms of depression,” Kwon added.

The study was scheduled to be presented at “SLEEP 2019” conference in Texas from June 8-12. (IANS)

Next Story

Smartphone Addiction Comes First, Depression Later: Study

When people feel stressed, they should use other healthy approaches to cope, like talking to a close friend to get support or doing some exercises or meditation, the researchers suggested

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Students, Smartphones, Obesity
Over 74 per cent of people type with two thumbs, and the speed increase it offers is very large. Pixabay

In a bid to rest the debate on what comes first — smartphone addiction or depression — a new study has found that young people who are hooked on to their smartphones may be at an increased risk of depression and loneliness.

A growing body of research has identified a link between smartphone dependency and symptoms of depression and loneliness.

However, it’s been unclear whether reliance on smartphones precedes those symptoms, or whether the reverse is true — that depressed or lonely people are more likely to become dependent on their phones.

In a study of 346 participants, ages 18-20, researcher Matthew Lapierre and his collaborators from University of Arizona found that smartphone dependency predicts higher reports of depressive symptoms and loneliness, rather than the other way around.

“The main takeaway is that smartphone dependency directly predicts later depressive symptoms,” said Lapierre, assistant professor in the department of communication.

“There’s an issue where people are entirely too reliant on the device, in terms of feeling anxious if they don’t have it accessible, and they’re using it to the detriment of their day-to-day life.”

In the study, which will be published in the Journal of Adolescent Health, Lapierre and his co-authors focus on smartphone dependency rather than on general smartphone use, which can actually provide benefits.

suicide, world, deaths, study
Depression is among the leading causes of disability in the U.S. and is being closely monitored by health authorities amid rising suicides nationwide. Pixabay

Understanding the direction of the relationship between smartphone dependency and poor psychological outcomes is critical for knowing how best to address the problem, said Pengfei Zhao who co-authored the study.

“If depression and loneliness lead to smartphone dependency, we could reduce dependency by adjusting people’s mental health,” Zhao said.

“But if smartphone dependency (precedes depression and loneliness), which is what we found, we can reduce smartphone dependency to maintain or improve wellbeing.”

The researchers measured smartphone dependency by asking study participants to use a four-point scale to rate a series of statements, such as “I panic when I cannot use my smartphone.”

Also Read: Twitter Rolls out a New Filter for Direct Messages (DM)

The study focused on older adolescents, a population researchers say is important because they largely grew up with smartphones and they are at an age and transitional stage in life where they are vulnerable to poor mental health outcomes, such as depression.

“It might be easier for late adolescents to become dependent on smartphones, and smartphones may have a bigger negative influence on them because they are already very vulnerable to depression or loneliness,” Zhao noted.

When people feel stressed, they should use other healthy approaches to cope, like talking to a close friend to get support or doing some exercises or meditation, the researchers suggested. (IANS)