A psychiatrist and first female president of the association of psychiatrists in Ogun State, Dr. Mrs Taiwo Adamson, has raised the alarm over the effects of social media on the mental health of youths.
The psychiatry expert warned that social media could kill and affect human mental health.
The former president of association of psychiatrists in the state said this while speaking at the second edition of a debate competition named after her, tagged, ‘Dr. Adamson Secondary School Annual Debate Competition’.
According to her, social media had made countless people sad and depressed, due to comparison among their friends, which would eventually make them mentally derailed or lose their self esteem.
She said, “Looking at the downside of it are the negative influence, the problem of this tends to be more impactful and unfortunate.
“Like somebody who is addicted to social media and can’t face his studies, then later drops out, some even commit suicide cause of depression, so the negative aspect of it is so frightening to many of us.
“You cannot over do everything, the same way you cannot over eat, you cannot be on social media 24/7, definitely, it is going to negatively impact your life. But, because they are young, parents must come in, guardians must come in, teachers in schools must come in, parents should seize their phones from this hour to that hour, and they must see what they are watching.”
She however, stated that the usefulness of social media were enormous, saying it also facilitates learning.
She said, “In every endeavour in life, there must be a balance of social network. There are so many opportunities you can get through it, for education, for so many things, also positive connectivity.”
In the same vein, the head of research and training at NPH, Aro, Majekodunmi Oluyinka, spoke on the impact of social media on student’s mental health.
According to him, social media had enormous benefits than its negatives, saying it has helped all aspects of human lives.
He said, “We must acknowledge the fact that social media has actually enhanced all aspects of our lives, even though it has its own demerits, but there are perhaps more benefits the social media has provided for us generally.
“When you look at mental health specifically, in the past, there are limited information about mental health that is available to the populace, but today, a lot of people now have access to very rich information about mental health, issues of mental illness, either in children or in adults.
“So it is now a means of accessing very adequate information about mental health that would help us collectively to live a very healthy life.
“But if people don’t make use of resources in the right way, there are bound to be problems associating with that.
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“So students, since they are young and very curious, they need to be guided and focused on what they want on the social media, if they’re not focused, they are likely to be unable to get the main information that would help them.”
Speaking on brain drain, Dr. Adamson lamented the rate at which doctors, nurses and consultants are leaving the country.
She said brain drain had many negative effects on Nigerians as she urged the federal and state governments to swing into action.
She said, “I’m devastated, consultant doctors are now exiting this country, these are people who have gathered a lot of experience for many years, they are more versatile in what to do more than the younger ones that haven’t gathered the experience.
“The government needs to do something to address what is going on in this country, we are asking for better renumeration, we have this money but it is being taken illegally.”