Social networking sites are a tool that are used around the world to help people stay connected with one another. It is utilized to explore, meet new people, and socialize. Many use handheld cellular devices to connect with others for several hours of the day. The excessive use of social media, and the crave to constantly conversate has led to an addictive behavior. Addiction to social media is considered to be problematic leading to several psychopathological issues, such as depression and suicidal ideation. Young people, specifically college students are believed to be at risk of problematic use, due to the internet being most available to their age group.
The addiction to the internet and social media is rising, and it is believed that negative repercussions may result from these actions. Addictive behavior is a major health concern college students possess, which can predict depression; in turn depression is considered to be associated with the thought of suicide. Overall it is believed that suicide ideation is related to, or present when social networks are excessively used.
The research aims to explore the links between internet and social media use and addiction, depression, and suicide ideation; since the issue has recently sprung into controversy. Recent and past studies only started to understand the issue and its complexities. The goal of the research is to answer the question of: Can use of cellphones and social media predict addiction, depression, and suicide ideation? The research also plans to create an explanation for addictive behavior to social media. In the research it is hypothesized that depression and suicide ideation are connected to social media addiction, and cellphone and social media usage can predict the possible behaviors of addiction. The research’s goal is to further explore and learn more about the topic based on previous studies and new procedures.
According to the procedures of the research it was concluded that addiction to social media had a high correlation to depression and suicide ideation. It was also discovered that the duration of cellphone and social media use had no correlation to the addiction. It was previously believed that usage is connected to addiction, thus producing depression and suicide ideation. With this it can be concluded that with shorter usage of the internet a student may still be addicted to social media, and be prone to depression and suicide ideation. Also suicide ideation was found to be greater in those who were in depression, rather than only addiction. In the research, different social media platforms were also considered for level of addictiveness. However there was not any major difference in the addictiveness between different platforms. Surprisingly there was a greater suicide ideation for some platforms compared to others.
Conclusions and Recommendations
From the research and results it can be concluded that there is a greater presence of depression and suicidal thoughts with addiction to social media. Craving, dwelling, relying, and depending on social media can produce psychopathological issues. On the other hand simply using social media extensively may be beneficial and create non-pathological behavior. Unlike the relationship between addiction and depression; there is no relationship between extensive usage and depression. Despite the extensive research and strong correlations future studying is required for a greater understanding. The epidemic of psychopathological problems is bound to increase with the high number of social media users. Further studying and information on proper social media usage is required to prevent the potential rising problems among these users. For future research it would be helpful to increase the sample size and survey a wide number of people for even more accurate results and conclusions.
The procedure for the research was thorough and extensive. The research properly studied university students and correctly surveyed them. The students were given instructions with consent allowing them to accept or refuse to respond in a survey. After agreeing they were capable of answering the questions. The results were recorded for each student according to a scale. It took into consideration the daily usage hours, addictive behavior, depression, suicidal ideation, cellphone use, and positive suicidal ideation. The survey also recorded the platform of social media each student uses. For the research, the ethics of the procedure were reviewed and approved. In the procedure the information for each student’s habits were extensive, and appropriate for the research. The result were also valid, aligning with previous researches that were conducted, thus making it reliable. Each dedicated idea was properly used in the evaluation of the results.
Recording which social media platform each student used along with their habits contributed to a useful and well-design research. The different platforms can reveal a lot about a student’s habits, and can show who may be more likely to possess psychopathological problems. In future researches the different platforms are going to play a larger part in the research. This is due to different platforms having varying availability of meeting new people, or conversing with others. As a result users who may be addicted to one platform that offers more have greater chances of depression or suicide ideation.
Along with posing as an excellent demonstration for future researches, it can also be utilized for current education. It can support educational and intervention programs. Through these programs people can be taught about the negatives of social media on human mental and physical health.
Overall, the research proves to be purposeful, valid, reliable, and appropriately designed. The research offers insight into cellphone and social media use and addictive behavior, and its affects on depression and suicide ideation. Despite the continuous debates, there are definitive psychopathological issues associated with the addiction. The research is proven to be far from complete, as continuous studying can provide more information in the future.
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