Adolescents in China who either spend more time on screen activities, such as watching TV or surfing the Web, or less time on non-screen activities, including physical activity, are at risk and significantly more likely to experience depression, according to a new study in the journal Heliyon. A greater association with depression in girls over boys was also found as the use of new digital media grows across the country.
In the United States, the Internet become an integral part of life; so with social media representing a sizable portion of that usage. More than two billion people globally use digital media in 2016; also this is predict to rise to nearly three billion by 2020. The number of digital media users in China has also increasing rapidly. Earlier studies have report that conduct problems, depressive symptoms, and suicide in nearly all develop countries have escalate since the Second World War.
They can now shop, navigate to travel, browse information; so consume various entertainment media; also communicate with one another in an unprecedented manner, and adolescents also spend more and more time using digital media. However, access to these digital media may have detrimental outcomes; so such as distraction from work or school, the spread of false information about individuals; also online bullying, and reduce face to face social interactions.
In China, adolescents are facing serious psychological difficulties. Recent evidence shows that the prevalence of depressive symptoms among Chinese students ranges from 11.7% to 22.9%; so representing a significant public health concern, given the established link between depression and suicide in China.
Depression among Chinese adolescents
The researchers find that greater media consumption screen time is relate to depression among Chinese adolescents; so although online screen time is a stronger predictor. The present study also showed that digital media had a greater impact on depression among girls; which is consistent with evidence of greater depression and suicide among women compared to men in China.
The new digital media, if not appropriately managed; so creates public health hazards in adolescents, commente Dr. Zhang. There are numerous and significant differences in economy, culture, and education; its between China and western countries, as well as clear differences in adolescent depression and suicide behavior.
Therefore, it may not be appropriate to make inferences about how digital media; which impacts negative outcomes among Chinese adolescents from findings that utilize samples from western countries. However, our study can use to warn Chinese adolescents to reduce the time they devote to digital media; also advise them to spend more time on non screen activities; so such as outdoor activities and face to face communication. They hope these results will help reduce depressive symptoms among Chinese adolescents.