Teenagers who spend the majority of their time listening to music are more likely to be depressed than those who spend the majority of their time reading, according to a new study.
Researchers spent 8 weeks calling 106 teenagers – half of which were diagnosed with clinical depression – up to 60 times a week to ask them what they were doing. It came to no surprise that the teenagers spent a majority of their time using some form of media. On average, the teens spent 7.5 hours a day watching TV, surfing the internet, texting, and listening to music.
What did come as a surprise was that contrary to earlier studies, TV watching did not seem to have any correlation with depression but music did.
Lead author of the study pediatrician Brian Primack says, “They don’t have a lot of energy, and this is a place where they can go and they don’t have to perform.”
On average, the teens spent 9 percent of their time listening to music. But those who listened to a lot of music were found to be 8 times as likely to be depressed than teens who weren’t listening very often. Teenagers who read were less likely to be diagnosed with depression, but they were also the minority at only 0.2 percent saying they were engaged in reading material.
Primack says if a teen is listening to lot of music, it may be a key indicator for parents that they are suffering from depression. Teenagers have different ways of showing depression than adults that can be overlooked and harder to diagnose.
To read the full article, “What Come First: Depression in Teens or Emo Music?” click here.