Depression Among Tween Girls Deepens as Social Media Use Spikes

The following is excerpted from an online article posted by MSN/Newsweek.

Preteen girls’ rates of depression are skyrocketing as social media use spikes, according to the most in-depth U.S. survey intended to examine the challenges facing girls in grades five through 12.

Girls as young as 10 are experiencing significant declines in self-confidence as they consume social media at unprecedented rates, according to The Girls’ Index 2023 report, conducted by the nonprofit Ruling Our eXperiences (ROX) and based on survey results from more than 17,000 girls.

While only 5 percent of fifth- and sixth-grade girls reported feeling sad or depressed every day in 2017, which was the first year of the survey, that number tripled to 15 percent in 2023.

The decline in happiness occurs as fewer preteen girls describe themselves as confident, dipping from 86 percent to 68 percent during the same six-year span.

All of the mental health concerns pointed out in the survey come alongside a significant uptick in social media use by this generation. A whopping 95 percent of fifth-grade girls reported using social media this year, and 46 percent spend six or more hours per day.

Source: MSN/Newsweek

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[reposted by] Jim Liebelt

Jim is Senior Writer, Editor and Researcher for HomeWord. Jim has 40 years of experience as a youth and family ministry specialist, having served over the years as a pastor, author, consultant, mentor, trainer, college instructor, and speaker. Jim’s HomeWord culture blog also appears on and Jim and his wife Jenny live in Quincy, MA.

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