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Social Media: Here is how it is creating Lifestyle pressure on Youth!

In these so-called "modern times", it has become so important for the students to ‘fit in’, to be considered ‘cool’ and ‘popular’, to have maximum like and comments on their uploads

Social Media, sarcasm
Researchers Develop System to detect Sarcasm on Social Media. Pixabay

Feb 18, 2017: Raksha Sharma, 20, had committed suicide in Jalandhar, Punjab over obscene comments on Facebook by two friends. This incident which took place in November, 2012,  left many people shocked and alarmed. The incident made everyone wonder for the first time about the amount of pressure social media puts on adolescents. Years later, this still remains a cause of worry.

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Facebook, twitter, Instagram, Snapchat and many more endless social media platforms consume most of our time on a daily basis. On an average, a teenager spends approximately an hour on social media every day.

It is a no shock that social media has become such an inseparable part of our lives. The scenario is such that we compromise a hot delicious meal for the sake of uploading a picture of it on Social Media.

In these so-called “modern times”, it has become so important for the students to ‘fit in’, to be considered ‘cool’ and ‘popular’, to have maximum like and comments on their uploads. What serves as a cause of worry is that social media, in some way or the other is affecting the lifestyles of people.

All of a sudden, smoking and drinking are considered as “cool habits”, whereas going to the “hottest new places” and attending the “funkiest parties” has become an absolute necessity.

This “Digital Age” has shaped our views in such a way, that we tend to spend more time living in this Virtual World, alienating ourselves from the Real World. Our days start and end by checking our smartphones and giving 100% priority to our social life when the sad truth is that, we have a friend list of thousands but still feel lonely and depressed on the inside.

Children aged 10, concentrate more on their Social Media accounts rather than their books. They have a higher knowledge of the latest apps than of their own curriculum. More time is spent in Parties and get-togethers in clicking selfies and talking to other people online, than in talking to the people present right in front of us.

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A smartphone with a good camera, in fact, the expensive Apple iPhone and DSLR cameras are considered as necessary so that Social Media accounts have great pictures in it.

Oxygen for the Youth today: Social Media; Source: Pixabay

Another matter which is disturbing is the fact that social media has somehow created this image of what’s perfect. Many girls who do not have a size-zero figure have fallen into self-loathing whereas guys are taking to the gyms for the perfect abs.

Wearing clothes of a particular label or brand, using certain items like makeup etc. are considered to be the rule by teenagers. In a way, social media has ripped them of their choices by creating imaginary guidelines of what is right and what is not.

Announcing everything on Social Media exposes users to a great deal of threat like cyberbullying, character shaming etc. It is a platform where people can become both famous and infamous. Sometimes, being put down on the Social Media platforms leads to chronic depression. Also, it gives greater power to people to do things which they know are wrong by hiding their true identities like defaming someone, getting into false contracts etc.

Social media is a virtual platform where it is very easy to modify the truth. Recently, a group working to create awareness about mental health carried out a unique project. They created a fake Instagram account where they uploaded pictures of a girl travelling to different places and enjoying her vacation. However, this project wanted to highlight how easily we ignore signs of mental tension. The fact that the girl had a glass of alcohol in her each single picture went unnoticed by the innumerable followers.

So, it is very easy to hide certain facts and show only what we want to on Social Media platforms. This is the reason why we never find people sharing sad pictures of themselves or bad experiences over social media, only happy ones.

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What we need to realize now and work upon is the fact that we control social media; it does not control us. We should have the power to ignore the negative influence it can have on us and not fall prey to it. It should be our choice to stop addicting about it and share only what we wish to show to the public and not every small detail.

-By Nikita Saraf of NewsGram; Twitter:  @niki-saraf


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Mindfulness meditation may lower major depression risk

The researchers recruited adult patients aged 18 and above with sub-threshold depression from public primary care clinics and randomly assigned them to a BAM intervention group

A new study suggests meditation can reduce stress and anxiety. VOA
  • Mindfulness meditation may reduce depression risk
  • It can also help in curing the depression
  • Mediation has several other benefits as well

Mindfulness meditation training may improve depression symptoms and reduce the incidence of major depression, a new study suggests.

Patients with clinically significant symptoms of depression who do not meet the criteria for major depressive disorder or dysthymic disorder are considered to have sub-threshold depression.

Practice of yoga is believed to heighten the spirit and the body.
Mindfulness meditation can reduce the risk of depression. Wikimedia Commons

According to the researchers from The Jockey Club School of Public Health and Primary Care in Hong Kong, sub-threshold depression can cause functional impairment and considerable economic costs, and it is a strong risk factor for developing major depressive disorder.

The study, published in the journal Annals of Family Medicine, undertook a randomised controlled trial to assess the efficacy of group-based behavioural activation with mindfulness (BAM) for treating sub-threshold depression.

Also Read: Online intervention helps teenage moms deal with depression

The researchers recruited adult patients aged 18 and above with sub-threshold depression from public primary care clinics and randomly assigned them to a BAM intervention group or a usual care group.

They randomly allocated 115 patients to the BAM intervention and 116 patients to usual care. The BAM group was provided with eight two-hour weekly BAM sessions by trained allied health care workers. Patients in the usual care group received usual medical care with no additional psychological interventions.

The primary outcome was depressive symptoms measured by the Beck Depression Inventory-II at 12 months. Secondary outcomes included incidence of major depressive disorder at 12 months. We assessed quality of life, activity and circumstances change, functional impairment, and anxiety at baseline, end of the intervention, 5 months, and 12 months, the researchers said.

Practice of yoga is believed to heighten the spirit and the body.
The group which meditated had lesser risk of depression. Wikimedia Commons

At 12 months, compared with usual care peers, BAM patients had a slightly more favourable change in levels of depressive symptoms on the Beck Depression Inventory-II. The incidence of major depressive disorder was lower with BAM, whereas groups did not differ significantly on other secondary outcomes at 12 months.

The researchers, including Samuel Y. S. Wong, suggested that BAM group appears to be efficacious for decreasing depressive symptoms and reducing the incidence of major depression among patients with sub-threshold depression in primary care. IANS