What Happens To Your Brain When You Mindlessly Scroll?

Dr. Clifford Segil, D.O., a neurologist at Providence Saint John’s Health Center, tells Bustle. Time on social media exploded accordingly: Bloomberg reported in March 2020 that both Twitter and Facebook saw huge surges in usage since the pandemic began, with Facebook alone reporting 70% rises on its platforms WhatsApp and Instagram. Nearly half of 24- to 39-year-olds who responded to an April 2020 survey of 2,000 Americans conducted by Onepoll on behalf of Bustle said they were mainly using social media to scroll for hours.Staying on social media for ages can also impact how your brain regulates emotions, and you may have felt this intensely in 2020. “Many people [experienced] sadness, anxiety, anguish, frustration, and boredom during their quarantine or social distancing efforts,” Dr. Sanam Hafeez Psy.D., a neuropsychologist, tells Bustle. But social media can help your brain get through it. When you’re engaging with posts that make you feel good, particularly if you’re engaging with somebody you know directly, your brain may react by giving you a boost. “Joy coincides with the release of dopamine and serotonin in the body,” Hafeez says. These neurotransmitters are linked to increases in mood.