SEVERE WX : Wind Advisory View Alerts

Study: Social Media Use and Social Isolation

Social media is seemingly everywhere we look and access to it is easier than ever before. But how much social media use is too much?

Posted: Oct 20, 2017 6:09 AM
Updated: Oct 20, 2017 6:09 AM

CLEVELAND – Social media is seemingly everywhere we look and access to it is easier than ever before.

But how much social media use is too much?

A recent study looked at whether heavy social media use could be tied to feelings of isolation.

Cleveland Clinic psychologist Joseph Rock did not take part in the study, but said it showed how heavy social media use can be problematic for folks who already struggle with social anxiety.

“People who are already kind of socially isolated got even more isolated because they used it as a substitute for social contact,” said Dr. Rock. “So if they were uncomfortable being in social situations, they didn’t have to be, and so they were even more isolated.”

The study looked at 1,700 people between the ages of 19 and 32.

Researchers found that those who spent the most time on social media had the highest likelihood of feeling socially isolated.

Even people who were not socially isolated to begin with had the tendency to back off of social contact when they engaged in more social media use.

Dr. Rock said it’s easy to lose sight of the fact that what we see on social media doesn’t tell the whole story – it’s a narrative that people have created and it’s full of edits.

He said it can be an even bigger issue for folks who struggle with social anxiety, because it doesn’t give them the practice they need and can keep them from learning to be around people.

“One of the problems with social media is, it’s actually a misnomer – they really ought to call it ‘isolation’ media – because if you look at the definition of social, it means you choose to be in the company of people, instead of being alone,” said Dr. Rock.

He said one of the best ways to escape the social media rut is to try out reality instead.

“There’s a reason this stuff is called virtual reality – it means it’s not quite reality,” said Dr. Rock. “And I think just getting out there and getting a sense of what’s really going on, and when you talk to an actual human being for a period of time, you’re going to get a more balanced picture of what’s really going on with them.”

Dr. Rock said for those who can look at social media every once in a while it’s no big deal. But if we find ourselves getting enraged by it, or it’s causing us to change our social habits, it’s time to take a step back and re-evaluate how much social media really can influence our day-to-day actions.

Oregon Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 348766

Reported Deaths: 4161
CountyCasesDeaths
Multnomah54797689
Washington37988313
Marion36055444
Clackamas29094304
Lane26966298
Jackson22632300
Deschutes19577123
Umatilla14241144
Linn12380120
Douglas11795240
Josephine9233195
Yamhill8517110
Klamath7709110
Polk715380
Malheur551574
Benton529130
Coos489691
Columbia371343
Jefferson361450
Union313146
Lincoln310638
Wasco281540
Crook274745
Clatsop239529
Baker198028
Tillamook193328
Hood River188337
Morrow181623
Curry178122
Harney108424
Grant97612
Lake89011
Wallowa67012
Gilliam1484
Sherman1463
Wheeler991
Unassigned00

California Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 4810682

Reported Deaths: 70604
CountyCasesDeaths
Los Angeles147569426398
Riverside3693444990
San Diego3641044163
San Bernardino3563155566
Orange3227415518
Sacramento1576212279
Santa Clara1445181890
Kern1441461605
Fresno1441232051
Alameda1198871374
San Joaquin1018071708
Ventura1005241164
Contra Costa99234982
Stanislaus851571315
Tulare78945951
San Francisco54031645
San Mateo53828622
Monterey50696582
Solano45761334
Santa Barbara44836521
Merced41781577
Sonoma40711402
Placer38902415
Imperial35642764
Kings32369314
San Luis Obispo29653329
Madera23518281
Butte23364260
Shasta23360334
Santa Cruz20861218
Yolo20147247
Marin17581243
El Dorado16960149
Sutter13775169
Napa12808100
Yuba994282
Tehama9298104
Humboldt9102108
Nevada903990
Mendocino752786
Lassen746346
San Benito737372
Tuolumne673993
Lake6506104
Amador537264
Siskiyou442742
Glenn430330
Calaveras381780
Del Norte356141
Colusa301718
Inyo196739
Mono16445
Plumas15756
Mariposa127315
Trinity86011
Modoc6698
Unassigned1860
Sierra1760
Alpine1020
Out of CA00
Medford
Partly Cloudy
44° wxIcon
Hi: 64° Lo: 39°
Feels Like: 44°
Brookings
Partly Cloudy
52° wxIcon
Hi: 50° Lo: 41°
Feels Like: 52°
Crater Lake
Partly Cloudy
44° wxIcon
Hi: 47° Lo: 34°
Feels Like: 44°
Grants Pass
Partly Cloudy
44° wxIcon
Hi: 61° Lo: 35°
Feels Like: 44°
Klamath Falls
Partly Cloudy
53° wxIcon
Hi: 58° Lo: 43°
Feels Like: 53°
Storm system arrives today
KDRV Radar
KDRV Fire Danger
KDRV Weather Cam

Community Events