41 Social Media Addiction Statistics & Facts
This roundup of social media usage statistics dives into the latest social media addiction statistics in the United States, providing insights on how this phenomenon is impacting our society.
How Many Americans Are Addicted to Social Media?
Nearly 70% of American adults use social media regularly. Meanwhile, teenagers spend an average of 7 hours and 22 minutes per day on screen media, with social media being a major contributor.
Top 15 Key Social Media Addiction Statistics
- Approximately 3.6 billion people worldwide used social media in 2020, with this number expected to increase to 4.41 billion by 2025.
- 70% of the U.S. population has at least one social media account.
- The average American spends 2 hours and 3 minutes per day on social media.
- 69% of U.S. adults use Facebook, with 74% of them visiting the platform daily.
- 90% of Millennials, 77.5% of Generation X, and 48.2% of Baby Boomers are active social media users.
- Approximately 210 million people suffer from social media addiction worldwide.
- 10% of U.S. teens report checking their social media more than 10 times per day.
- 60% of people have reported feeling the need to reduce their time spent on social media.
- Social media addiction has been linked to increased levels of anxiety, depression, and poor sleep quality.
- The Fear of Missing Out (FOMO) is a significant factor contributing to social media addiction, affecting 56% of social media users.
- The average American has 7.1 social media accounts.
- 88% of U.S. adults aged 18-29 use social media, the highest percentage among age groups.
- 64% of U.S. adults believe that social media has a mostly negative effect on the way things are going in the country today.
- During the COVID-19 pandemic, social media use increased by 21% globally.
- 72% of U.S. teens believe that tech companies manipulate users to spend more time on their devices.
Social Media Use by Platform
Different social media platforms attract different user demographics. Here are some statistics on the most popular platforms in the United States:
- Facebook: 69% of U.S. adults use Facebook, with 74% of them visiting the platform daily.
- YouTube: 81% of U.S. adults aged 18-29 use YouTube.
- Instagram: 40% of U.S. adults use Instagram, with 63% of them visiting the platform daily.
- Twitter: 23% of U.S. adults use Twitter, with 46% of them visiting the platform daily.
- LinkedIn: 28% of U.S. adults use LinkedIn, with 9% of them visiting the platform daily.
Global Social Media User Statistics
- Globally, Facebook has the most users with 2.8 billion active users as of December 2020.
- YouTube comes in second place globally, with over 2 billion logged-in monthly active users.
- WhatsApp and Messenger, both owned by Facebook, have 2 billion and 1.3 billion monthly active users respectively.
- Instagram has over 1 billion monthly active users globally.
- Twitter has approximately 330 million monthly active users worldwide.
- Snapchat has approximately 265 million daily active users as of January 2021.
United States Global Social Media User Statistics
- As of April 2021, Facebook had an estimated 190 million users in the United States.
- YouTube is the second most popular social media platform in the United States, with an estimated 130 million unique viewers per month.
- Instagram has approximately 120 million monthly active users in the United States.
- Twitter has approximately 69 million monthly active users in the United States.
Social Media Usage Among Different Age Groups
- Ages 18-29: According to a Pew Research Center study, 48% of young adults in this age group report using social media "almost constantly," while an additional 30% use it several times a day.
- Ages 30-49: In the same study, 35% of adults aged 30-49 reported using social media almost constantly, with another 34% indicating they used it several times a day.
- Ages 50-64: Among those aged 50-64, only 15% claimed to use social media almost constantly. However, an additional 36% reported using it at least several times per day.
- Ages 65+: The lowest rate of social media addiction is found among individuals aged 65 and older. Only 6% reported using social media almost constantly, while another 22% indicated they used it several times a day.
Gender Differences in Social Media Usage
- Men: A study conducted by the Pew Research Center found that 62% of men in the United States use social media daily, with 15% reporting they are "almost constantly" on these platforms.
- Women: The same study revealed that 72% of women in the U.S. use social media daily, and 22% admit to using it "almost constantly."
- Frequency of usage: According to a survey by Statista, women tend to use social media more frequently than men. Among female respondents, 42% reported checking their accounts multiple times per day, compared to only 34% of male respondents.
- Platform preferences: Another study from Statista found that women are more likely to use Facebook (75%) and Instagram (43%) than men (63% for Facebook and 31% for Instagram). However, men are more likely to use Twitter (24%) compared to women (21%).
Social Media Usage in the U.S.
- The average daily time spent on social media by U.S. users in 2021 was 2 hours and 7 minutes. (Statista)
- In 2021, U.S. adults spent an average of nearly 3 hours per day on mobile apps, with social media accounting for roughly 70% of that time. (eMarketer)
- Users aged 18-24 spend the most time on social media, averaging over 3 hours per day, while users aged 55+ spend an average of around 1 hour and 30 minutes daily. (Nielsen)
- A study found that heavy social media users (those who spend more than three hours a day) are twice as likely to report feeling socially isolated compared to light users (those who spend less than one hour a day). (American Journal of Preventive Medicine)
Effects of Social Media Addiction: Statistics and Findings
- According to a study conducted by the Royal Society for Public Health in the UK, social media use is linked to increased rates of anxiety, depression, and poor sleep.
- The study found that 70% of young people surveyed had experienced cyberbullying, and nearly 60% reported social media having an overall negative impact on their self-esteem.
- The same study found that 63% of users reported feeling inadequate compared to others on social media.
- The survey found that 43% of adults in the U.S. reported that they were checking their email, texts, or social media accounts constantly or often.
- The study found that participants who limited their social media use to 30 minutes per day for three weeks reported reduced feelings of loneliness and depression compared to a control group.
- 67% of US adults believe that social media consumption is directly related to feelings of social isolation and loneliness.
- 38% believe that social media impacts mental health in a negative way.
- 74% believe that social media usage has an impact on suicide rates.
- A survey by the Pew Research Center found that 64% of adults in the U.S. believe that social media has a mostly negative effect on the way news is reported.
Alarming Statistics on Teen Social Media Addiction
- According to recent data, children typically devote 50 minutes each day to checking their social media feeds.
- 50% of teens feel addicted to their mobile devices, with 59% of parents expressing concern about their children's addiction.
- The average age for a child to get their first smartphone is 10 years old.
- A study found that the more time teens spend on social media, the higher their risk of developing depression and anxiety.
- Another study showed that adolescents who spent more than five hours a day on smartphones or other electronic devices were 71% more likely to have at least one risk factor for suicide compared to those who used such devices for only one hour a day.
- Research indicates that excessive use of social media can lead to lower self-esteem, negative body image, and cyberbullying among young people.
Social Media Use Linked to Suicidal Behavior Among Teens
- Social media addiction is linked to increased suicide rates among teens and children. (Child Mind Institute)
- A study found that the more time teens spend on social media, the higher their risk of developing suicidal thoughts and behavior. (JAMA Pediatrics)
- Teenage girls who spend a lot of time on social media are at a higher risk for depression and suicidal ideation. (National Institutes of Health)
- A survey by the American Psychological Association found that 48% of parents are concerned about their child's social media use impacting their mental health.
- According to a survey by Common Sense Media, 13% of teenagers reported feeling addicted to social media, while another 50% said they "sometimes" feel addicted.
- The same survey found that teenagers who spend more than five hours per day on electronic devices are twice as likely to report being unhappy compared to those who spend less than an hour per day.
- In a study by the Royal Society for Public Health, Instagram was found to be the most detrimental app for young people's mental health, with Snapchat coming in second.
Mental Health Impact of Social Media Addiction
Social media addiction can lead to many adverse effects on mental health. Some of the most common issues include:
- Increased anxiety and depression: A study found that people who use seven or more social media platforms are more than three times as likely to suffer from anxiety and depression than those who use two or fewer.
- Poor sleep quality: Excessive use of social media, especially before bedtime, can lead to poor sleep quality.
- Lower self-esteem: Comparing oneself to others on social media can lead to feelings of inadequacy and lower self-esteem.
In addition, other studies have shown that:
- Limiting social media use to 30 minutes per day can lead to significant improvements in well-being, including reduced feelings of depression and loneliness.
- Social media platforms such as Instagram and Snapchat have been linked to increased levels of anxiety, depression, and poor sleep among young people.
- Excessive social media use was associated with a higher risk of developing symptoms of ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder).
- Social media use can disrupt the natural dopamine reward system in the brain, leading to addictive behaviors and negative mental health outcomes such as anxiety, depression, and loneliness.