What do we know?
How many symptoms of social media addiction do you have?
I just have to send a short WhatsApp message, quickly finish reading this blog post and share this photo… then I will really put my phone away! Who does not recognize this feeling that you really have to react to a WhatsApp message or a photo on Instagram or Snapchat? In fact, this situation is recognisable for everyone who uses social media. When you are able to put your phone away without feeling bad and without it causing you stress, you can assume that social media are not a problem for you.
For some youths, however, it is difficult to put their phone away. If they do put their phone away (for example, after being pushed by others), they can get a feeling of restlessness and may want to take a look at their phone as quickly as possible. These characteristics indicate problematic social media use, also called social media addiction.
The first results of the DiYo project show that young people who experience symptoms of social media addiction are often less satisfied with their own lives over time (Van den Eijnden et al., 2018).
Questionnaire about social media use
With this test (in Dutch), you can check how many symptoms of social media addiction you have!
Symptoms of gaming addiction?
For many young people, gaming is part of their daily activities. Fortunately, the vast majority of young people know how to manage the time that they spend on games, so playing a game can be a form of entertainment.
However, gaming sometimes becomes a problem. If you are constantly arguing with your parents or others around you because of your gaming behaviour, if you barely do any homework or if you feel very bad when you cannot play games, these signs may be the first indications that gaming is more than a leisure activity for you and that you find it difficult to keep the time that you spend on gaming within bounds.
The first results of the DiYo project show that young people who experience symptoms of gaming addiction are often less satisfied with both their own lives and their relationships with friends or peers (Van den Eijnden et al., 2018).
Young people who experience social problems (including problems entering into and/or maintaining friendships) and young people who find it difficult to concentrate for a long time have a higher risk of developing symptoms of gaming addiction (Peeters et al., 2017). Gaming can be a way to relax for these young people and playing a game can help them to make online friends easier.