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NPR Shots Health News: Limiting social media improves body image for teens and young adults

Allison Aubrey

Feb 26, 2023

How do we adapt to this new world in a way where it wouldn't negatively impact us or control us?

U.S. teens spend more than eight hours a day on screens, and there's growing concern over how social media may affect their mental health.

Now, a new study, published Thursday by the American Psychological Association, validates what some parents have experienced when their teenagers cut back: They seem to feel better about themselves. I've seen this in my own kids when they return from summer camp, where phones are not allowed. They seem more at ease and less moody.

Social media can feel like a comparison trap, says study author Helen Thai, a doctoral student in psychology at McGill University. Her research found that limiting screen time to about one hour a day helped anxious teens and young adults feel better about their body image and their appearance.

Read more on NPR Shots Health News.

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