The study showed that Instagram had the most negative effects on body image, sleep and FOMO (fear of missing out), while YouTube had more positive effects on community building, awareness and self-expression.
Instagram and Snapchat "are very image-focused and it appears they may be driving feelings of inadequacy and anxiety in young people," Shirley Cramer, the chief executive of the Royal Society for Public Health, said in a statement.
Researchers, however, offered some ways to reduce risk. They recommend that social media companies use “heavy usage warning” pop-ups, spot “troubled” users and point out photo manipulations.
They also encourage more research from academic institutions, independent researchers and social media companies to combat mental health issues.