Cybersmile Publish National Digital Wellbeing 2022 Report Examining the Impact of Social Media Use on Gen Z Wellbeing in the U.K.
The study was undertaken to better understand Gen Z’s relationship with social media and how it affects the way they feel about their bodies, lives and personal wellbeing. Findings from Digital Wellbeing 2022 will be utilized to ensure that Cybersmile continues providing the most useful and effective education and support services possible. You can download the full Digital Wellbeing 2022 report by clicking on the image above. If you are affected by anything touched on within this article, follow the links to our various support services or click on the blue logo icon at the bottom right of the screen to start using Cybersmile Assistant, our smart AI support assistant.
The Digital Wellbeing 2022 study (click here to download the full report) asked 1000 participants aged 16-24 across the U.K. a series of questions relating to the way that their social media use affects them. Important topics such as mental health, body image, social comparisons, negative news consumption, social media addiction and many more were explored as part of the research project.
“I feel so lucky that I’m able to be myself and express how I feel and who I am on social media, it’s amazing to be able to see so many different people from across the world, to connect with them and share experiences. Most of the time it is an incredible experience, but now and then it can get tough online. It is important to get some extra help if you ever find yourself struggling because your mental health and wellbeing is super important. Talk to your friends or family about how you are feeling or reach out to the incredible team at Cybersmile for help.”
Holly H, Official Cybersmile Ambassador
The study was undertaken to better understand Gen Z’s relationship with social media and how it affects the way they feel about their bodies, lives and personal wellbeing. Findings from Digital Wellbeing 2022 will be utilized to ensure that Cybersmile continues providing the most useful and effective advice, education and support services possible.
“Our Digital Wellbeing 2022 report offers significant new insights into how social media use is impacting the daily lives of an entire generation. With evolving technology and increased platform retention times – Gen Z users are being impacted to an extent beyond anything we have previously discovered. These findings offer Cybersmile valuable insights into the digital wellbeing of 16 to 24-year-olds in the U.K. and will play a key role in helping us to tailor our support resources, develop new educational materials and create effective awareness campaigns.”
Dan Raisbeck, Co-founder, The Cybersmile Foundation
Cybersmile’s commitment to learning more about the relationship between Gen Z and social media has been supported by advisory panel member Dr Barbara Mariposa – a medical doctor with a background in psychiatry and public health, who’s books include The Mindfulness Playbook, The Kindness Habit and Leading with Presence.
“The findings of Digital Wellbeing 2022 are stark. They underline the vital importance of education from an early age in the safe and respectful use of social media. Social media’s edited versions of reality offer perfect bodies and perfect worlds, which nearly 9 in 10 participants in the study reported had a negative impact on how they feel about themselves, their bodies and their lives. Young people are rightly concerned about addiction and increased anxiety, the amount of time taken away from studying, and the detrimental effect of this time on the basics of good self-care, such as exercise and nutrition. Cybersmile’s Digital Wellbeing 2022 report highlights the very real damage unbalanced usage of social media platforms can do.”
Dr Barbara Mariposa, Wellness & Equity, Cybersmile Advisory Panel
The study was conducted by Censuswide on behalf of Cybersmile between May 16th and May 24th across England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland. The regional data offers interesting insights and comparisons for major cities across the U.K. including Belfast, Birmingham, Brighton, Bristol, Cardiff, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Leeds, Liverpool, London, Manchester, Newcastle, Norwich, Nottingham, Plymouth, Sheffield and Southampton.
“It can sometimes be hard for us to understand the difference between the real world and the digital world as we can often become engrossed in a pixelated reality. The way we look after our own wellbeing, learn how to use the internet productively and communicate through it is key. Education should be introduced at an early age to encourage balance and knowledge as well as looking out for red flags and knowing what to do! I encourage my followers to be aware of their personal wellbeing when using social media and that my young and parent followers practice this through family activities that can be done in a fun and safe way – encouraging meaningful social and digital interactions while building trust. Your digital wellbeing is so important!”
Amazing Arabella, Gen Z Influencer
Key findings from Digital Wellbeing 2022 include:
- 46% of respondents indicated that social media makes them want to permanently change a part of their body through surgery.
- 87% of respondents indicated that content on social media makes them feel pressured to be perfect.
- 85% of respondents indicated that social media negatively affects the way they feel about their own body.
- 89% of respondents indicated that social media negatively affects their mental health.
- 77% of respondents indicated that social media negatively affects their physical health.
- 89% of respondents indicated that they feel unsatisfied with their life when comparing it to others on social media.
- 86% of respondents indicated that social media use makes them feel anxious.
- 32% of respondents indicated that they feel addicted to bad news online.
- 33% of respondents indicated that they don’t feel safe to share their opinions and views online.
- 44% of respondents indicated that they are worried they have an addiction to social media.
- 52% of respondents indicated that they feel better when they spend less time on social media.
- 51% of respondents indicated that their sleep is negatively impacted by the amount of time they spend online.
- 32% of respondents indicated that their diet is negatively impacted by the amount of time they spend online.
- 32% of respondents indicated that their exercise is negatively impacted by the amount of time they spend online.
- 40% of respondents indicated that their study is negatively impacted by the amount of time they spend online.
If you are affected by anything touched on within this article, we can help you. Visit our Help Center or click on the blue logo icon at the bottom right of the screen to open Cybersmile Assistant, our smart AI support assistant.
To learn more about Cybersmile and our work, please explore the following recommendations:
- Who Are Cybersmile?
- People We’ve Helped
- Cybersmile Education Program
- Cybersmile Campaign and Activity Highlights of 2021
- TikTok Star Holly H Announced as Official Cybersmile Ambassador
- Cybersmile Publish National Gen Z Report Exploring the Prevalence and Emotional Impact of Identity-Based Cyberbullying in the U.S.
- Cybersmile Announce Canadian Formula One Driver Nicholas Latifi as New Official Ambassador
- Cybersmile Partners with BT to Launch Education Platform for Young People to Tackle Online Hate
- Mental Health, Wellbeing and Equity Expert Dr Barbara Mariposa Joins Cybersmile Advisory Panel
- Stop Cyberbullying Day 2021 Highlights
- Cybersmile and Urban Decay Launch Changemaker Education and Empowerment Program
- Liverpool & England Star Jordan Henderson and Cybersmile team up for ‘People Not Profiles’ Anti-Cyberbullying Campaign
- Cybersmile and CO. by Colgate Hold Roundtable Event to Raise Awareness of Cyberbullying
- Cybersmile and Instagram Partner to #CreateAKinderEnvironment Online
- Cybersmile and Dragon Mania Legends Team Up to Combat Online Bullying and Celebrate Freedom of Expression
- Latin Music Star Samantha Sanchez Announced as Official Cybersmile Ambassador
- BT Unveils Hope United Shirt to Raise Funds for Cybersmile
- Renowned U.K. Doctor And Wellbeing Expert Dr Radha Modgil Joins Cybersmile Advisory Panel
- Cybersmile Announce Partnership with CO. by Colgate
- Catching Up with Liverpool and England Star Jordan Henderson to Discuss the Problem of Online Abuse
- Cybersmile and Asphalt 9: Legends Launch ‘Get on the ride, own the future’ NFT Fundraising Campaign
- Cybersmile And Instagram Announce ‘Banter or Bullying? No Offence’ Report And Campaign
- Cybersmile Warns of Rise in Cyberbullying Incidents Involving Doctored Images and Deepfake Videos
- Twitter Change Policy to Prohibit the Sharing of Images or Videos of People without Their Permission
- British Government Launch New Online Media Literacy Strategy to Help Internet Users Remain Safe and Informed Online
- Cybersmile Unveil New Website and Brand Identity for Stop Cyberbullying Day
- Instagram Announce New Changes to Protect Users from Abuse
- Cybersmile, Instagram and Cosmopolitan Reunite to Unveil The Positivity Index 2021
- Twitch Introduce New Tools And Guidelines To Tackle Hate Speech And Harassment
- Cybersmile and Ten Toes Media Announce Partnership
- Twitter’s Head of U.K. Public Policy Katy Minshall Talks All Things Safety
- Experts Issue Doomscrolling Warning With Increasing Concerns For Mental Health
- Cybersmile Launch Interactive Learning Modules Focused On Getting The Most From Instagram
- Cybersmile Publish National Digital Wellbeing 2020 Report Focussing On Young People’s Technology-Related Wellbeing
- Twitter Announce New Feature To Tackle Misinformation After Successful Trial
- Cybersmile Launch ‘Think Twice before You Type’ Campaign To Mark Safer Internet Day
- Snapchat Announce The Launch Of Snap Minis To Offer Mental Health Support To Users
- Instagram And Facebook Announce Ban On All Content Promoting LGBT Conversion Therapy
- Cybersmile Help Center
- Managing An Eating Disorder During Lockdown
- Facebook And Instagram Announce New Focus To Combat Racism Online
- Cybersmile Announce Brandon Hendrickson As Official Cybersmile Ambassador
- The Cybersmile Conversation (Allow a few seconds to load, but worth the wait!)
- Cybersmile Campaigns
- What We Do
- Cybersmile Gaming
- Australian Government put Big Tech Companies on Notice to End Online Bullying
- Cybersmile Publishes National Millennial And Gen Z Study Of Attitudes And Perspectives Toward Social Media Platforms
- Snapchat Announce New Mental Health Intervention Feature
- Gaming Help Center
- Study Links Negative Effects Of Cyberbullying With Serious Mental Health Problems Among Young People
- Understanding Social Media And Mental Health
- Corporate Partnership Program
- Cybersmile Newsroom
- Become A Cybersmile Sustainer