BY BRENDA PATOINE ILLUSTRATION BY LIA KANTROWITZ
ocial Media & Teens:
No Simple Answer
I s social media rotting kids’ brains? Parents, educators, and clinicians alike are increasingly concerned that contemporary youth’s seeming obsession with social media sites like
Snapchat and Instagram may be fundamentally changing how their brains develop and heightening their risk for mental health disorders. Alarm bells are ringing in part because of the steeply rising incidence of depression and anxiety in young people and the striking increase in teen suicide, now at its highest rate in 20 years. These trends parallel the rise of the smartphone culture and near-universal use of social media by young people.
18 DANA FOUNDATION CEREBRUM | WINTER 2020
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