Social Media Use and Perceived Social Isolation Among Young Adults in the U.S

Brian A. Primack, Ariel Shensa, Jaime E. Sidani, Erin O. Whaite, Liu yi Lin, Daniel Rosen, Jason B. Colditz, Ana Radovic, Elizabeth Miller

Research output: Research - peer-reviewArticle

  • 3 Citations

Abstract

Introduction: Perceived social isolation (PSI) is associated with substantial morbidity and mortality. Social media platforms, commonly used by young adults, may offer an opportunity to ameliorate social isolation. This study assessed associations between social media use (SMU) and PSI among U.S. young adults. Methods: Participants were a nationally representative sample of 1,787 U.S. adults aged 19-32 years. They were recruited in October-November 2014 for a cross-sectional survey using a sampling frame that represented 97% of the U.S. population. SMU was assessed using both time and frequency associated with use of 11 social media platforms, including Facebook, Twitter, Google+, YouTube, LinkedIn, Instagram, Pinterest, Tumblr, Vine, Snapchat, and Reddit. PSI was measured using the Patient-Reported Outcomes Measurement Information System scale. In 2015, ordered logistic regression was used to assess associations between SMU and SI while controlling for eight covariates. Results: In fully adjusted multivariable models that included survey weights, compared with those in the lowest quartile for SMU time, participants in the highest quartile had twice the odds of having greater PSI (AOR=2.0, 95% CI=1.4, 2.8). Similarly, compared with those in the lowest quartile, those in the highest quartile of SMU frequency had more than three times the odds of having greater PSI (AOR=3.4, 95% CI=2.3, 5.1). Associations were linear (p<0.001 for all), and results were robust to all sensitivity analyses. Conclusions: Young adults with high SMU seem to feel more socially isolated than their counterparts with lower SMU. Future research should focus on determining directionality and elucidating reasons for these associations.

LanguageEnglish (US)
JournalAmerican Journal of Preventive Medicine
DOIs
StateAccepted/In press - 2017
Externally publishedYes

Fingerprint

Social Media
Social Isolation
Young Adult
Information Systems
Cross-Sectional Studies
Logistic Models
Morbidity
Weights and Measures
Mortality
Population
Surveys and Questionnaires
Patient Reported Outcome Measures

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Epidemiology
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

Cite this

Social Media Use and Perceived Social Isolation Among Young Adults in the U.S. / Primack, Brian A.; Shensa, Ariel; Sidani, Jaime E.; Whaite, Erin O.; Lin, Liu yi; Rosen, Daniel; Colditz, Jason B.; Radovic, Ana; Miller, Elizabeth.

In: American Journal of Preventive Medicine, 2017.

Research output: Research - peer-reviewArticle

Primack, BA, Shensa, A, Sidani, JE, Whaite, EO, Lin, LY, Rosen, D, Colditz, JB, Radovic, A & Miller, E 2017, 'Social Media Use and Perceived Social Isolation Among Young Adults in the U.S' American Journal of Preventive Medicine. DOI: 10.1016/j.amepre.2017.01.010
Primack BA, Shensa A, Sidani JE, Whaite EO, Lin LY, Rosen D et al. Social Media Use and Perceived Social Isolation Among Young Adults in the U.S. American Journal of Preventive Medicine. 2017. Available from, DOI: 10.1016/j.amepre.2017.01.010
Primack, Brian A. ; Shensa, Ariel ; Sidani, Jaime E. ; Whaite, Erin O. ; Lin, Liu yi ; Rosen, Daniel ; Colditz, Jason B. ; Radovic, Ana ; Miller, Elizabeth. / Social Media Use and Perceived Social Isolation Among Young Adults in the U.S. In: American Journal of Preventive Medicine. 2017
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abstract = "Introduction: Perceived social isolation (PSI) is associated with substantial morbidity and mortality. Social media platforms, commonly used by young adults, may offer an opportunity to ameliorate social isolation. This study assessed associations between social media use (SMU) and PSI among U.S. young adults. Methods: Participants were a nationally representative sample of 1,787 U.S. adults aged 19-32 years. They were recruited in October-November 2014 for a cross-sectional survey using a sampling frame that represented 97% of the U.S. population. SMU was assessed using both time and frequency associated with use of 11 social media platforms, including Facebook, Twitter, Google+, YouTube, LinkedIn, Instagram, Pinterest, Tumblr, Vine, Snapchat, and Reddit. PSI was measured using the Patient-Reported Outcomes Measurement Information System scale. In 2015, ordered logistic regression was used to assess associations between SMU and SI while controlling for eight covariates. Results: In fully adjusted multivariable models that included survey weights, compared with those in the lowest quartile for SMU time, participants in the highest quartile had twice the odds of having greater PSI (AOR=2.0, 95% CI=1.4, 2.8). Similarly, compared with those in the lowest quartile, those in the highest quartile of SMU frequency had more than three times the odds of having greater PSI (AOR=3.4, 95% CI=2.3, 5.1). Associations were linear (p<0.001 for all), and results were robust to all sensitivity analyses. Conclusions: Young adults with high SMU seem to feel more socially isolated than their counterparts with lower SMU. Future research should focus on determining directionality and elucidating reasons for these associations.",
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AB - Introduction: Perceived social isolation (PSI) is associated with substantial morbidity and mortality. Social media platforms, commonly used by young adults, may offer an opportunity to ameliorate social isolation. This study assessed associations between social media use (SMU) and PSI among U.S. young adults. Methods: Participants were a nationally representative sample of 1,787 U.S. adults aged 19-32 years. They were recruited in October-November 2014 for a cross-sectional survey using a sampling frame that represented 97% of the U.S. population. SMU was assessed using both time and frequency associated with use of 11 social media platforms, including Facebook, Twitter, Google+, YouTube, LinkedIn, Instagram, Pinterest, Tumblr, Vine, Snapchat, and Reddit. PSI was measured using the Patient-Reported Outcomes Measurement Information System scale. In 2015, ordered logistic regression was used to assess associations between SMU and SI while controlling for eight covariates. Results: In fully adjusted multivariable models that included survey weights, compared with those in the lowest quartile for SMU time, participants in the highest quartile had twice the odds of having greater PSI (AOR=2.0, 95% CI=1.4, 2.8). Similarly, compared with those in the lowest quartile, those in the highest quartile of SMU frequency had more than three times the odds of having greater PSI (AOR=3.4, 95% CI=2.3, 5.1). Associations were linear (p<0.001 for all), and results were robust to all sensitivity analyses. Conclusions: Young adults with high SMU seem to feel more socially isolated than their counterparts with lower SMU. Future research should focus on determining directionality and elucidating reasons for these associations.

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