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Does social media have the power to make you miserable?

Does social media have the power to make you miserable?

It's the negative side of social media. Constantly scrolling through news feeds and seeing what seems like other peoples' picture-perfect lives can make you miserable.

"Mostly use Instagram. I have Snapchat and Facebook but I'm normally on Instagram," Alyssa Argenio said.

There's a temptation to constantly stay on top of the latest from the internet world. It's something Argenio is guilty of doing.

"Like everyday, probably more than I should, but since it's on everyone's phones now, it's just so easy to have access to," Argenio said.

There are times when Argenio felt the need to put her phone down to get away from it all, but even that is difficult for her to do.

"If I go home for the weekend, I feel so disconnected from social media and then I'll have to go on it and I'll be overwhelmed and bombarded by all the posts," Argenio said.

But with all the time spent liking posts that show someone on vacation or at a new restaurant, can social media have the power to make you miserable?

"Everyone is different, so I think that there are probably some people that are more vulnerable to the negative sides of social media than others," clinical psychologist Dr. Tayna Gesek said.

Gesek said that those with a family history of depression and anxiety should be even more cautious while on social media. She has seen it negatively affect her patients and the biggest culprit is the comparison issue.

"We look at Facebook. We look at Instagram and say 'this is the pinnacle of this person's life, this is the everything that they represent,'" Gesek said. "You then end up comparing yourself to the restaurants their eating at, or the things that their children are accomplishing or the vacations they get to take but not everyone posts the failed mornings or vacations. But I think we see more of the success. "

She said you experience highs and lows everyday, but when you simply look at a Facebook page or an Instagram post, you're only seeing that person's high.

"Yes, it completely impacts your self-concept, which is who you think you are and what you think you can do. and then eventually your self-esteem, which is 'I can't do anything right and look at what everyone is doing and I have this horrible life here,'" Gesek said.

So the next time you feel yourself starting to compare, it might be best to put the phone down.

"I think that forces you to go back to some more traditions times of interacting, which is more face-to-face communication, sitting down at the table and having a real genuine conversation and having all the evidence to compare to, and not just a little snippet," Gesek said.

It's best to find time to detach from the device to keep your mind in the moment and away from wondering the web.

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