Checking social media often may affect teens’ brains, study says

A new study shows the use of social media could be affecting the brains of teens.
A new study shows the use of social media could be affecting the brains of teens.(Pexels)
Published: Jan. 4, 2023 at 1:47 PM CST|Updated: Jan. 4, 2023 at 1:50 PM CST
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(CNN) – Frequent use of social media could be a brain-changer for teenagers.

According to a study by neuroscientists at the University of North Carolina, teens who check social media platforms often are more likely to be sensitive to general social rewards and punishments.

The study was conducted with students 12 to 13 years old when research began.

Over a 3-year period, the kids reported their social media behavior and underwent imaging of their brains.

Those who checked social media more often showed greater neural sensitivity in parts of the brain, while those who checked social media less showed less sensitivity.

It’s unclear whether that’s a good or bad thing.

A lead researcher said that, while the study showed a strong correlation between social media habits and greater sensitivity to feedback, it cannot say for sure if one is causing the other.