Screen Time, Suicides & Our Youth

We know it’s not good for us, yet we do it any way. I’m referring to the massive amount of screen time that many of us are experiencing on a daily basis.

Many of us are lucky in the sense that we remember very clearly the days before computers, social media, smart phones and tablets. Our youth does not have that privilege. To them, it’s part of normal life and in a sense, they are right. But should spending 9+ hours on digital screens a day be normal?

New research is showing correlation between time spent on screens and depression and suicide. Back in the day, if you were on an airplane, bus or even a chairlift, you would make friendly conversation. But nowadays, it’s not unusual for many to be engulfed in their phones and tablets. We’re taking away human interactions and replacing them with digital content. From a recent article on Forbes, we’re told that “In fact, teens who spent more time doing sports, homework, socializing with friends in real life, and going to church had a lower risk for both depression and suicide.”

Many of us are completely addicted to social media. According to Forbes writer, Alice G. Walton, “… research has reported that cells in one of the reward areas of the brain, the nucleus accumbens, are activated when participants view Instagram pictures with more “likes," which again suggests that social media use can tap into addiction pathways.”

But the digital trend isn't going away. If anything, the amount of time we're spending online keeps increasing. Read our article on Why Each of Us Needs a Digital Detox or Reduce Your Teen's Screen Time With These 5 Alternatives.