I know people who can't put their smartphones down for more than a few minutes because of Facebook. I have seen this addiction play out in real time, but one California psychology professor believes a human's dependence on social media is a form of mental illness.

I don't know that I'd go so far as saying you are mentally ill if you spend a lot of time interacting on social media sites such as Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook (Meta), but then again I'm not a professor emeritus of psychology. I spend an average of about five to six hours a day with social media tabs open on my computer, but that's because it's part of my job description.

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I read an interesting take on social media's grasp on the world (including Idahoans) from California doctor and psychology professor Larry Rosen. He basically insinuated in a recent article in Wired Magazine that was shared on its Instagram page that people who spend too much time communicating through these platforms are more likely to become depressed and anxiety-ridden. Rosen went on to say that it's an "epidemic."

I do believe that people open themselves up to depression through social media interaction. I think the recurring instances of worldwide suicide caused by these types of interactions is solid evidence for the case, but there are those that don't internalize results from their interactions online to such an extent. Some people are just mentally weaker than others and have low self-esteem, which is a sad reality.

Do you agree that social media addiction is a form of mental illness?

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