With teen mental health deteriorating over five years, there's a likely culprit



I’m pretty sure I read this article 40 years ago and it was the TV’s fault.



EVERYTHING new gets blamed for the ruin of the next generation.

Socrates–yes, that ultimate philosopher–thought books were going to corrupt and destroy the minds of youth.


As I mentioned on another thread, I have often thought that it would be good if the power grid went down— then we’d actually have to get away from our computer screens and communicate with each other.

Of course that also means that we couldn’t get things like gasoline and money…


Thanks for the article.Im sure sceen can be very addictive…


Imagine how much Time each individual would suddenly have


I’d have ship tons of time as i wouldn’t be able to do any work at all for my employer


Yeah. No.

I just was without power for 3 days a couple weeks ago due to the hurricane. Not fun.

I didn’t communicate with my neighbors because I was busy doing things by hand…like washing clothes and dishes and running around to make sure the generator kept the heat and well on.


True, but the massive jump in the scale of the problem, as well as the degree of social change that accompanied the innovation, isn’t even close to comparable. The tv changed a lot, but nothing like the internet and social media.

Personally, I think the problem is the massive increase in Godlessness in our society.


I’ve heard the Internet compared to the railroad in the amount of change it brought to society. In the sense of creating new jobs/ industries and revolutionizing many facets of how we do business, I agree. However, in the sense of the impact on just the individual person and social change, I think TV is comparable.

I don’t find social media by itself to be that big of a change.

But overall, I think if more teens are killing themselves, it’s not because of new technologies. It’s because of stuff like Godlessness, breakdown of the family, and this society’s tendency to constantly raise the age at which young people can realistically go out, take control of their lives and start living them.


Needing to memorize everything is unnecessary, but in terms of corruption, he was correct.

Not that there is anything slightly wrong with books in of themselves.


Personality types affected probably play a huge part…you’d have to be one to understand ,but the introvert and procrastinating personality could be hit the hardest


Well, my wife worked in a high school for years, and she’d have to disagree with you here. Social media was an all-consuming aspect of many of her students’ lives, far beyond being into a tv show/series.

I couldn’t agree with this more.


Maybe social media is a change in putting a lot of pressure on high school kids. I’m looking at it from an overall perspective of society, not the impact it has on one impressionable and vulnerable group.

I’ve been seeing social media since the 80s (Usenet) and many of my friends were early adopters back in the BBS days or via e-mail lists. (The college I originally attended for my bachelors’ was one of the engineering schools involved in inventing the precursors to the internet. ) A number of them were high school age themself at that time. Having social media migrate to platforms like Livejournal or Myspace or Facebook was just same drama, different day. The same scenarios repeat over and over, it’s only new to people who have never been on a message board or a mail list or Usenet, etc before.

I do think that most high schoolers should probably have their use more limited and monitored than is happening, because they use terrible judgment in the stuff they post and it has bad consequences. And I don’t think anybody younger than high school should be on there at all.


If I were to guess

Social media–the pressure that everyone lives perfect lives, has perfect relationships, bodies, etc. Teenagers naturally feel insecure at this age, so they’re already vulnerable. I can’t remember the actual cognitive term, but teenagers also tend to feel like everyone’s paying attention to them. Being exposed to perfect images constantly can makes things worse.

Sex-they’re having sex at a young age and are unable to deal with the stuff that comes with it.

Parents-idk the average age of the parents, but I’m guessing they were born in the time where career>families. That’s got to have some serious effects on kids.

Culture in general-all about taking, personal achievement and perfection. School schedules are also quite crazy and teens don’t really have the time to care for themselves.

Chemicals/etc: maybe there’s something that can biologically cause depression. In their food or something. I genuinely don’t know much here.


And cruel slander…once the words out there it’s extreamly hard to get ones good name back


A new version of this “study” gets brought up every few months in school (I’m 17). People are looking for a scapegoat, and lo and behold, they have found a correlation and assume it to be causation! The article tries to address this here:

Of course, it’s possible that instead of time online causing depression, depression causes more time online. But three other studies show that is unlikely (at least, when viewed through social media use).
Two followed people over time, with both studies finding that spending more time on social media led to unhappiness, while unhappiness did not lead to more social media use. A third randomly assigned participants to give up Facebook for a week versus continuing their usual use. Those who avoided Facebook reported feeling less depressed at the end of the week.

I’d like to point out something: all three of these studies that they use to support their claim are solely based upon Facebook usage. A single website, in the entirety of the internet. And that’s supposed to make things more definitive? Facebook can be quite depressing because of news articles and angry status updates, but the whole internet is not composed of this.

The majority of the users on this forum, I’ve seen, are adults. So let me give you one teen’s perspective: Why are we more depressed than other generations? Because the world is rapidly going downhill and we live in a time of great sadness (you could also say Godlessness) in general. Poverty has existed as long as we have existed, but it’s more prevalent now, and so on. Growing up in this environment… I can’t say it’s been great, for many of us who are more sensitive to the emotions surrounding us.


Thank you Hope Philomena for this insight .


Poverty is not “more prevalent now” than it was back when I was a young person in the 60s and 70s. You just see more of it because the Internet is constantly bringing it to your door instead of you seeing it for a few minutes on the news or once a week in Life magazine. Believe me when I say people were starving to death and being homeless just as much if not more back then.

I am not putting down your feelings, but it’s important that you realize that every single generation of youth goes through this and yours does not have it any better or any worse than others. The only generations that I would say actually “had it worse” are the ones where huge numbers of the 18-year-old males were going off to war and getting killed.


That is what I meant by more prevalent. A better word I could use would be more established, more well known.

I’m aware that every single generation goes through this. What I’m saying is, it’s ridiculous for us to attempt to place all blame upon a single factor like “the internet”.

I’m addressing statistics that prove my generation is, on average, more prone to mental health issues. I am referring to no other aspect of my generation, just what the article is trying to use to make an assertion. In no way am I claiming my generation has it so much worse, so please don’t say that. I never made that claim. I said we live in a time of great sadness. That includes your generation.

There’s no use trying to decide “who has it worse” because no one will ever agree. I’m just talking about the rise in depression (which I am also diagnosed with, as well as a large portion of my classmates) within my generation.

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