Original Articles

Social Media Addiction in Young Adult Patients with Anxiety Disorders and Depression


Department of Psychiatry, University of Health Sciences Bağcılar Training and Research Hospital, İstanbul, Turkey


Department of Psychiatry, Kocaeli University School of Medicine, Kocaeli, Turkey


Department of Psychiatry, Gazi University School of Medicine, Ankara, Turkey

Alpha Psychiatry 2021; 22: 257-262
DOI: 10.5152/alphapsychiatry.2021.21242
Read: 1942 Downloads: 575 Published: 16 August 2021

Objective: Although the relationship between social media addiction (SMA) and mental health is bidirectional, there have been very few attempts to investigate patients with depression or anxiety disorders in terms of SMA. The first aim of this study is to determine whether young adult patients diagnosed with depression or anxiety disorders have a tendency to become addicted to social media. The second aim of the study is to examine the effects of 6 DSM-based personality traits (dependent, histrionic, narcissistic, obsessive-compulsive, borderline, and paranoid) that commonly coexist with these disorders on SMA.

Methods: This study was carried out with 276 participants between the ages of 18 and 35 in the Psychiatry Outpatient Clinic in Gazi University Hospital, Turkey. Seventy-three patients diagnosed with depression, 80 patients diagnosed with anxiety disorders, and 123 healthy controls were recruited for the study. The SMA Scale, Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale, and the Personality Belief Questionnaire-Short Form were administered to the participants.

Results: Patients with anxiety disorders (PAD) and patients with depression (PD) were more addicted to social media than healthy controls (HC) despite similar frequencies of social media use. Dependent, histrionic, narcissistic, obsessive-compulsive, borderline, and paranoid personality features in HC increased the susceptibility to SMA. Borderline and dependent personality features comorbid with PAD increased the susceptibility to SMA. None of the personality traits comorbid with PD had an effect on SMA.

Conclusion: The present study will serve as a base for future studies which explore factors that can make PAD or PD more vulnerable to SMA.

Cite this article as: Şentürk E, Geniş B, Coşar B. Social media addiction in young adult patients with anxiety disorders and depression. Alpha Psychiatry. 2021;22(5):257-262.

EISSN 2757-8038