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Social media definitely has its pros and cons, but its proving to be detrimental to the mental health of teens.

A new poll conducted by the University of Michigan is the latest to release concerning research about the connection between social media and youth mental health. The study suggests that teen anxiety and depression have grown, stating that the number one cause is social media and screen time. In fact, the New York Post reports that the rates of teen depressive symptoms have increased massively since the mass adoption of smartphones in the early 2010s.

The University of Michigan has been conducting this study every year since 1991, with 50,000 students in 8th, 10th, and 12th grades nationwide who are asked if they agree with the statements, “I can’t do anything right,” “I do not enjoy my life,” and “my life is not useful.” The results are alarming, and as a result, Surgeon General Vivek Murthy has warned that teen depression and suicide are on the rise in the social media age. And while both boys and girls are struggling, it’s a trend that seems to be impacting girls more.

With the rise of popular social media apps like Instagram, Snapchat, and TikTok, the poll implies that screen time is replacing critical rites of passage like teen dating, driving, and working a job. The pandemic exacerbated this, along with Gen Z coming into an age where there is political polarization, cancel culture, and an overall numbness to current events and humanitarian issues.

Experts recommend that parents strictly limit the time their child spends on smartphones and social media, but ultimately, the minimum age of social media should be raised to 16.