Social media use and depression in adolescents: a scoping review

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


There have been increases in adolescent depression and suicidal behaviour over the last two decades that coincide with the advent of social media (SM) (platforms that allow communication via digital media), which is widely used among adolescents. This scoping review examined the bi-directional association between the use of SM, specifically social networking sites (SNS), and depression and suicidality among adolescents. The studies reviewed yielded four main themes in SM use through thematic analysis: quantity of SM use, quality of SM use, social aspects associated with SM use, and disclosure of mental health symptoms. Research in this field would benefit from use of longitudinal designs, objective and timely measures of SM use, research on the mechanisms of the association between SM use and depression and suicidality, and research in clinical populations to inform clinical practice.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)235-253
Number of pages19
JournalInternational Review of Psychiatry
Issue number3
StatePublished - Apr 2 2020


  • Social media
  • adolescents
  • depression
  • social networking sites
  • suicidality

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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