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expert reaction to higher media use associated with more psychotic experiences during early adulthood

A study published in JAMA Psychiatry looks at adolescent media use and psychosis during adulthood. 


Dr Simona Skripkauskaite, Senior Postdoctoral Researcher in Child and Adolescent Mental Health, University of Oxford, said:

“This important and high-quality piece of research by Paquin and colleagues shows that high digital technology use in adolescence can be an early marker, rather than a cause, of later mental health problems. Their careful interpretation of their, at first glance, ‘scary’ findings add to a growing body of literature that is moving away from seeing digital technology as a root cause of all the contemporary troubles and, instead, considers it in the context of pre-existing and co-occurring personal circumstances that often underlie both elevated media use and mental health difficulties. Importantly, authors identify a substantial minority of adolescents in this Canadian population who have, for some reason, reduced their computer use in late adolescence, but still had more frequent psychotic experiences in adulthood, even after other personal experiences were considered. The evidence of this ‘curved trajectory’ group, highlights that simply stopping adolescents from using digital technology without better understanding and addressing the reasons for it may be, at best, useless or even harmful.”


‘Trajectories of Adolescent Media Use and Their Associations With Psychotic Experiences’ by Vincent Paquin et al. was published in JAMA Psychiatry at 16:00 UK time on Wednesday 10th April.


DOI: 10.1001/jamapsychiatry.2024.0384


Declared interests

Dr Simona Skripkauskaite: Dr Simona Skripkauskaite is a senior postdoctoral researcher in child and adolescence mental health at University of Oxford. Her work aims to understand the development of and support needs for mental health difficulties in relation to Covid-19 pandemic, digital technology use, and neurodiversity. Her current research is mainly supported by ESRC and the Westminster Foundation.


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