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Excessive exposure to social media risk factor for depression, suicide — neuropsychiatrist

Joseph Oyekanmi

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Excessive exposure to social media risk factor for depression, suicide — neuropsychiatrist

Consultant neuropsychiatrist Dr Maymunah Kadiri says excessive exposure to social media is a risk factor for depression and mental health issues, which can lead to suicide.

Kadiri, also a cognitive behavioural therapist, told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Lagos on Tuesday that
the high rate of depression and suicide, especially among young people, was due to emotional attachment and lying on social media.

She lamented that many people have become so addicted to social media that they cannot go a minute without using their phones to chat on WhatsApp, Facebook, Twitter, watch movies or listen to the news, among others.

She explained that excessive exposure to social media can affect an individual psychologically and lead to depression and emotional trauma.

The consultant neuropsychiatrist, therefore, called for a limit to social media.

She added that “news on social media can affect health, not only in a good way but also in a bad way.

“Unfortunately, many people have become addicted to phones and social media and can’t go a minute without picking up their phones to make calls or browse social media.

“People spend too much time on social media, which greatly affects their mental health. “

Kadiri, who however said that “social media is a good technological innovation, but has been used
by many people to exaggerate their strengths and achievements rather than a combination of strengths
and weaknesses.

“It has been observed that people on social media post areas that show their sophistication in relation to their
weakness; they display areas that promote their importance as opposed to their flaws.

“The way brain chemistry works is that every time you go to social media you see other people.
progress as negative for yourself.

“Those who have not yet achieved these achievements begin to see themselves as less and not hard enough and the feeling
can lead to depression and, if not properly managed, can lead to suicidal thoughts.

The consultant added that whenever a person chooses to like or dislike a social media post, the functions of the human brain are impaired.

She explained that the chemistry behind such an alteration was that once the person whose photo was liked saw the “Like,” it changed the person’s brain for good, making them feel elated but brought dysphoria to the other person who liked the post.

“So as the dysphoria increases, it changes the chemistry of the brain, and then the person starts having suicidal adulations.

“The person’s mood begins to change, and as the mood changes, the person goes through depression, losing interest in what they usually like to do. “

Dysphoria is an emotional state that can follow a variety of mental illnesses or physical conditions. A person with dysphoria often experiences profound discomfort and dissatisfaction in life, followed by depression, anxiety and restlessness. (NAN)

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