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UKAT Launches New Initiative to Help Individuals Understand Unhealthy Social Media addiction and Its Consequences

Borehamwood, United Kingdom, May 09, 2023- UKAT, a leading addiction treatment provider, is proud to announce the launch of its new initiative aimed at helping individuals better understand unhealthy social media use and its consequences. The initiative is part of UKAT’s commitment to addressing the growing concern of social media addiction in the UK and beyond.

Though no official diagnosis exists for social media addiction, it is becoming increasingly common today with some serious repercussions to one’s physical and mental health. For example, in January 2023, 57.10 million social media users were reported in the UK, which equates to 84.4 per cent of the total population— this significant rise in the number results from humans’ social behaviour and needs. Because we are social creatures, we need or crave the companionship of others to thrive in life. However, these social connections also unknowingly impact our mental health and happiness. For example, if two or more people send us a friend request in a day, we become instantly happy thinking about our popularity, and if someone blocks us, we feel hatred, anxiety, depression, or maybe lonely. But are all these feelings worth it? Let’s see.

Social media is an incredible invention in today’s world. It keeps us in touch with our loved ones, keeps us posted about work opportunities, and even offers us a great pastime. But, while social media has its benefits, chances are that people have experienced its negative impacts at least once in a lifetime. And children and teenagers are more prone to it. Like any behavioural addiction, social media also impacts brain function, and an individual start using social media compulsively. People can become so accustomed to or addicted to social media that he or she cannot stop scrolling through posts, images, and videos. As a result, they develop an addiction, which interferes with other areas of life, such as broken relationships, lack of interest at work, or failures at school. Also, unhealthy social media use and addiction pose serious consequences mentioned below.


Consequences of Excessive or Unhealthy Social Media Use

Though research is going on to establish the long-term consequences of unhealthy social media use and addiction, good or bad, in people’s life, multiple studies have found a strong link between excessive social media use and increased susceptibility to mental health problems. A few negative experiences that excessive social media use promotes include:

  1. Reduces Face-to-Face Interaction

When an individual use social media more often, they automatically tend to spend less time with people who are present with him or her physically. It also annoys the loved ones when a person mindlessly scroll through social media channels instead of attending to them. While social media is a great alternative to connect when no one is around, it can never rival the level of support and comfort users get by being physically present with someone. Another reason social media is incomparable to face-to-face interaction is that it eliminates non-verbal cues. For example, when we talk to someone face to face, we notice everything in their body language. However, in social media, communication becomes complicated because of the lack of physical interaction, and as a result, misunderstandings occur, even between best friends. To eliminate this adverse effect of unhealthy social media use and addiction, spend quality time with your friends and family rather than engaging in their virtual reality.

  1. Distraction from Life Goals

Believe it or not, social media is a real distraction. And people get so wrapped up in it that they neglect their daily responsibilities or real-life goals if they are severely addicted to social media. Instead of pursuing their dream job or acquiring new skills, they strive for internet stardom. As a result, they slowly and steadily lose their loved ones, career, friends, and even regular social connections.

Achieving goals and working hard to get them requires immense motivation, which social media kills with its perks. It offers an easy outlet to distract people when they don’t feel like doing any work or putting in the hard work needed.

  1. Cyberbullying

Another negative impact of social media is cyberbullying. Because social media allows complete anonymity, bullies can say things comfortably that they would not usually speak to a person face-to-face, and people can become victims of online abuse. For example, the classmate can make a fake profile to bully other classmates online while being friendly in person. Also, it doesn’t matter if that classmate is saying horrible things to others; once in a blue moon, classmate will be exposed to it. Cyberbullying leads to negative thoughts and perspectives and even drives people to hurt themselves. Hence, getting out in the world and putting social media on hold will help people make more severe and loving relationships instead of seeking attention online.

  1. Social Comparison

Social media create unrealistic expectations in people’s minds. It is because social media allows people to make a particular persona. For example, an individual may see people posting their gorgeous vacation photos, a post about their new baby, new home, pictures of partying all night, and whatnot, but he or he don’t see all the messy stuff behind. What people usually display on their social media accounts isn’t their reality but an attempt to make people believe certain things about them. And because a person only see that good stuff, it may compare the life with others, called social comparison. It worsens when he or she see others’ lives better than others, significantly lowering the self-esteem and eventually leading to mental health problems and social anxiety, especially in young people.

  1. Unhealthy Sleep Patterns

Another negative consequence of unhealthy social media use and addiction is poor sleep or sleep deprivation. It happens when people use social media at bedtime. Giving themselves five minutes after every five minutes on social media disturbs your sleep cycle and quality, and it end up awake all night or don’t get enough sleep to go to work or school the next day. Hence, if the sleep patterns change or the productivity levels decline, it may be a warning sign that individuals are becoming addicted to social media. Don’t let social media algorithms take over your life and steal your valuable sleep time.

How Can You Decrease Social Media Use?

A few tips that can consider achieving a healthy balance with social media use are mentioned below:

  • Leave the phone, tablet, or laptop out of the bedroom.
  • Delete unnecessary social media applications from the smartphone.
  • Turn off the phone or tablet while working or studying. It will help to maintain the concentration and enjoy other recreational activities.
  • Take up a new hobby that is not tech-related, like cooking, sports, art classes, etc.
  • Set a time boundary to use social media applications, and don’t go beyond that.
  • Visit the friends and family members once a week to interact with them physically.



Key Takeaways

When used correctly and consciously, social media can be a great tool to connect with people living far away. But the adverse effects become prominent if one fails to understand the difference between a hobby and addiction. The one way to stop unhealthy social media use and addiction are to cut back on the online time, set clear boundaries, and take frequent breaks. However, if they still don’t see any difference and becoming more addicted to social media over time, they can always visit rehab clinics that offer behavioural addiction treatment and therapies.


About UKAT:

UKAT is a leading addiction treatment provider in the UK, offering a range of evidence-based treatments for individuals struggling with drug and alcohol addiction, as well as behavioral addictions such as gambling and gaming. With a network of clinics across the country, UKAT is committed to providing high-quality, compassionate care to those in need.


Contact Information:
Company: UK Addiction Treatment Ltd
Websites: https://www.ukat.co.uk/
Email: info@ukat.co.uk 
Phone: 0808 258 3148
UK Addiction Treatment Ltd
Unit 1, Floor 1 Imperial Place
Maxwell Road, Borehamwood
WD6 1JN, United Kingdom