News Release


Peer-Reviewed Publication

BMC (BioMed Central)

Social media use may have different effects on wellbeing in adolescent boys and girls, according to research published in the open access journal BMC Public Health.

Researchers at the University of Essex and UCL found an association between increased time spent on social media in early adolescence (age 10) and reduced wellbeing in later adolescence (age 10-15) - but only among girls.

最近发表在开放获取期刊《BMC公共卫生》(BMC Public Health)上的一项研究显示,社交媒体的使用对青春期的男孩和女孩会产生不同的影响。英国埃塞克斯大学和伦敦大学学院的研究者发现,青春期早期(10岁)花在社交媒体上的时间越多,青春期后期(10-15岁)的心理健康状况就越不好——但这种现象只出现在女孩身上。

Dr Cara Booker, the corresponding author said, “Our findings suggest that it is important to monitor early interactions with social media, particularly in girls, as this could have an impact on wellbeing later in adolescence and perhaps throughout adulthood.”

研究的通讯作者Cara Booker博士说:“我们的研究显示,密切注意孩子——尤其是女孩——在青春期早期使用社交媒体的情况非常重要,因为这可能会影响她们青春期后期甚至成年后的心理健康状况。”

The authors found that adolescent girls used social media more than boys and social media interaction increased with age for both boys and girls. At age 13, about a half of girls were interacting on social media for more than 1 hour per day, compared to just one third of boys. By age 15, both genders increased their social media use but girls continued to use social media more than boys, with 59% of girls and 46% of boys interacting on social media for one or more hours per day.


Wellbeing appeared to decline throughout adolescence in both boys and girls, as reflected in scores for happiness and other aspects of wellbeing. Dr Booker said: “Since we did not observe an association between social media use and wellbeing among boys, other factors, such as the amount of time spent gaming, might be associated with the boys’ observed decline in wellbeing.”


The study used data from the youth panel of the UK Household Panel Study - a large national survey which interviews all members of a household annually, from 2009 – 2015. A total of 9,859 UK adolescents aged 10 to 15 years completed questions on how many hours they spent interacting on social media sites on a typical school day. The researchers assessed wellbeing among this cohort using two measurements: a happiness score built from questions about how happy they are with different aspects of their life including family and school, and the Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire (SDQ), which measures negative aspects of wellbeing such as emotional and behavioural problems.


The authors found that throughout adolescence happiness scores dropped nearly three points from 36.9 to 33.3 in girls and two points from 36.02 to 34.55 in boys. While SDQ scores dropped for boys and increased for girls, indicating that girls experienced more negative aspects of wellbeing, the researchers concluded that overall wellbeing decreased for both.


The authors caution that because the study used the self-report data and only social media interactions on school days were recorded, the associations between social media and wellbeing may have been underestimated.



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Notes to editor:

1. Research article:


Gender differences in the associations between age trends of social media interaction and wellbeing among 10-15 year olds in the UK
Booker et al. BMC Public Health 2018
DOI: 10.1186/s12889-018-5220-4

When the embargo lifts the article will be available at: 限制令解除后,原文链接如下:

Please name the journal in any story you write. If you are writing for the web, please link to the article. All articles are available free of charge, according to BMC's open access policy.

报道时请提及期刊名称《BMC公共卫生》(BMC Public Health)。如果您是为网站写作稿件,请附上原文链接。由于BMC的开放获取政策,本刊所有文章都可以免费阅读。

2. BMC Public Health is an open access, peer-reviewed journal that considers articles on the epidemiology of disease and the understanding of all aspects of public health. The journal has a special focus on the social determinants of health, the environmental, behavioral, and occupational correlates of health and disease, and the impact of health policies, practices and interventions on the community.

《BMC公共卫生》(BMC Public Health)是一本同行评审的开放获取期刊,主要发表关于流行病学和对公共卫生各个方面理解的文章。期刊特别关注的话题包括会影响健康的社会因素,与健康和疾病相关的环境、行为和职业因素,以及政策、医疗实践和社区干预的影响力。

3. A pioneer of open access publishing, BMC has an evolving portfolio of high quality peer-reviewed journals including broad interest titles such as BMC Biology and BMC Medicine, specialist journals such as Malaria Journal and Microbiome, and the BMC series. At BMC, research is always in progress. We are committed to continual innovation to better support the needs of our communities, ensuring the integrity of the research we publish, and championing the benefits of open research. BMC is part of Springer Nature, giving us greater opportunities to help authors connect and advance discoveries across the world.

BMC作为开放获取出版的先锋,不断推出一系列高质量的同行评议期刊,这包括了BMC Biology 和BMC Medicine等涵盖范围较广的期刊,以及Malaria Journal、Microbiome和BMC系列期刊等专门刊物。BMC认为,科研永不止步。因此,我们致力于不断创新,以更好地满足科学共同体的需要,确保所发表的科研成果的完整性,并推广开放研究的益处。BMC是施普林格∙自然旗下机构,这让我们更有机会帮助世界各地的作者相互沟通并促进科学发现。

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