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Professor Rachel Rodgers on why Instagram has a negative impact on the mental health of teenagers.

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Photo by Matthew Modoono/Northeastern University

Dr. Rachel Rodgers (Associate Professor of Applied Psychology & Faculty Affiliate and Executive Committee Member of WGSS) was interviewed by News@Northeastern on the intricacies of social media which lead to negative impacts on teenagers’ mental health. Professor Rodgers explains that the “mechanics” of the app, particularly its “highly visual nature” is also a contributing factor that we should not overlook.

There’s the fact that the more popular applications with young folks are highly visual. You’re only consuming pictures and you’re also invited to only produce pictures of yourself. Both of those things orient you towards thinking that your appearance is a really important piece of you—if you’re only seeing photos of other people and only posting photos of yourself, it emphasizes that appearance is a really important part of self-worth, which we know is a risky way of considering appearance because intrinsically appearance is going to change over time.

Professor Rachel Rodgers

To read the full interview, click here.

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