Doomscrolling negatively impacts mental health

With all the bad news in 2020, it feels like social media has only added to our collective misery.


Caden Moe is upset at seeing all the bad news on social media. (Photo illustration by Caden Moe)

Caden Moe, Opinion Editor

Every day, we keep scrolling and scrolling, hoping that there will be a ray of sunshine, and it seems there are none to be found. It’s getting a lot harder to look on the bright side of things, especially when everybody would rather be pessimistic about the state of the world.

This is the phenomenon known as “doomscrolling”, and as 2020 continues to go on, it eats away at our collective mental health more and more.

Mind you, doomscrolling isn’t new to this year. The term has actually existed since at least 2018. Anybody who uses social media can say that they’ve had days where they just scroll through many different negative posts. This year is different, however, because instead of this only occurring every now and then, it’s our daily routine.

The fact that we’re all cooped up inside most of the time, with little opportunity to talk to other people in person and make sense of everything, means there often feels like nothing to do but use social media to browse how the world is messed up today.  

From the COVID-19 pandemic, to climate change, to racism and police brutality, the news just doesn’t seem like it’s capable of being good or uplifting anymore. You may see an article or video on how COVID cases are at an all time high in America, and up falling down the rabbit hole of post after post of how terribly we’ve been handling the virus.

We come out of social media these days feeling worse about ourselves rather than better, but it doesn’t have to be this way. There are plenty of things we can do that will bring us joy, rather than stress and negative thoughts. Take a walk. Read a book. Spend time with your family.

While it’s okay to keep up to date on current issues, it’s important that we still keep some focus on the good things in life, because there is a lot more good in the world than you may think.