Does Social Media Influence Addiction?

There is no denying the prevalence that social media holds in our society today, and there are many ways in which it can influence and affect frequent users of Instagram, Twitter, or Facebook. Can this influence even reach to addiction problems? If you or a loved one is facing the struggle of addiction, this may be valuable information that could either promote or inhibit recovery.

A study done by NCBI states that, “In clinical settings, it is critical to learn about clients’ social networks and about network members’ attitudes toward abstinence and recovery.” This is because a person’s social network can greatly influence their own beliefs and attitudes, so it is important to evaluate the attitudes surrounding someone to see if they will have a positive or negative impact. If you spend a lot of time on social media, throughout the day you will be inundated with the ideas and beliefs that are spread by the people you follow. The type of people you follow could have a great impact on the outlook you yourself have towards various subjects, including addiction.

Social Media

Having a social network full of people who don’t support abstinence will likely hinder your recovery.

If your social media network is drowning in negativity or is generally unsupportive of abstinence and recovery, this could be hindering on your own path of recovery. It is important to surround yourself with the support and positivity of those who want to see you improve, and if you spend a lot of time on social media, it may be best to evaluate who you are following in order to filter the content that you are exposed to throughout the day. It is important to consider any triggers or reminders of your past lifestyle that could present any temptation of relapse, and to remove these from your life if possible. This may mean stepping away from old friends who wouldn’t be a good influence, and often they can even have influence over social media.

Another way that social media can have an influence in a positive way is by spreading awareness and information. With so many teens and young adults on social media daily, there are now more ways to reach them with messages of advice and the facts of what harm addiction can cause NIDA also observes that “By providing a platform for communicating science-based, health-related messages, social media may also enhance screening, prevention, and treatment of substance use and addiction.” This rise of a global community connected online has opened many doors to the possibilities of analyzing behaviors and interactions, in order to improve the efficiency of substance abuse treatments and interventions.

If you or a loved one are going through the struggles of an addiction, call 800-953-3913 (Who Answers?) to speak with a caring specialist who can guide you through the recovery process. The steps you take to recovery, even as far as your social media, are all to help promote a healthier overall lifestyle and well-being, so that you can make the most of your life after recovery. Call to get started today.

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