Study Rejects Findings That Social Media Causes Stress

March 22, 2015

Unlocking Word Meanings

Read the following words/expressions found in today’s article. 

1. contrary /ˈkɒn trɛr i/ (adj.) – referring to an opposite of something
Example: His study’s findings were contrary to mine.

2. distant /ˈdɪs tənt/ (adj.) – not being friendly toward somebody
Example: His friends noticed that he became distant after the accident.

3. depression /dɪˈprɛʃ ən/ (n.) – a mental condition that causes a person to experience sadness over a long period of time
ExampleDepression is common among the unemployed.

4. nonfactor /nʌn ˈfæk tər/ (n.) – something that has no effect to another
Example: The researchers considered the change of questions as a nonfactor.

5. saddening /ˈsæd n ɪŋ/ (adj.) – causing sadness
Example: He posted a saddening article about poverty.


Read the text below.
Contrary to previous studies, a new research claims that spending time on social media sites causes no increase in one’s stress levels.

The recent study funded by the Pew Research Center in Washington found no evidence that people’s stress levels can increase due to the Internet. Past studies, dating back to the 1990s, concluded that the Internet can affect users negatively. Among the effects included being distant to people and increased feelings of loneliness and depression.

About 2,000 adults were surveyed in the current study. Researchers asked questions that assess the frequency of using social media sites, e-mail, and text messaging. Another set of questions were given to measure the participants’ stress levels.

Researchers found that social media usage was a nonfactor in men’s stress levels. Frequent and infrequent Internet users among men showed no difference in stress levels. Among women, frequent Internet users proved to be less stressed compared to those who rarely use social media. Researchers noted that the former scored 21% lower on the study’s stress measurement.

The authors explained that, generally, women tend to be more emotional than men. With the Internet, women are able to connect with others and express their emotional experiences in a wider range. A possible cause for an increase in stress level may be saddening posts made by their family and friends.

Viewpoint Discussion

Enjoy a discussion with your tutor.  

Discussion A

·         Do you find social media stressful or helpful? Please explain your answer.
·         How do social media change the way you interact with people?

Discussion B

·         What causes your stress levels to increase?
·         How do you avoid or lessen your stress?

March 22, 2015