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Facebook and depression go hand in hand, study suggests

If you're feeling a bit depressed lately, try logging off Facebook. No, seriously, get off Facebook.

According to a recent study, there is a link between people becoming depressed, and them scrolling through Facebook all day.

It’s not the social media itself which causes depression though, it’s a bit more complicated than that.

It is in everyone’s subconscious to compare themselves to others, and having a pretty good insight into other people’s lives, Facebook offers a good platform for people to compare themselves to their friends.

However, people only post the good and interesting things from their lives, filtering out the boring parts (obviously, no one wants to see you calculating your bills, even though it might sound interesting to some), and when others only see the fun stuff, they start believing their lives are boring and – ta da! Depression!

A research called 'Seeing Everyone Else's Highlight Reels: How Facebook Usage is Linked to Depressive Symptoms' published in the Journal of Social and Clinical Psychology, University of Houston researcher Mai-Ly Steers expands on previous studies about the detrimental effects of Facebook, particularly with regards to the unrealistic expectations of quality of life it creates, The Independent reports.

"Although social comparison processes have been examined at length in traditional contexts, the literature is only beginning to explore social comparisons in online social networking settings," Steers said.

"It doesn't mean Facebook causes depression, but that depressed feelings and lots of time on Facebook and comparing oneself to others tend to go hand in hand," Steers explained.

"One danger is that Facebook often gives us information about our friends that we are not normally privy to, which gives us even more opportunities to socially compare.”

There you have it, folks. Stop comparing yourselves to other people, and if you can’t help it – log off.

Sead Fadilpašić

Sead is a freelance journalist with more than 15 years of experience in writing various types of content, from blogs, whitepapers, and reviews to ebooks, and many more, across sites including Al Jazeera Balkans, TechRadar Pro, IT Pro Portal, and CryptoNews.