Social media breaks more common among teens than you might think

Survey reveals more than half of teens say they have taken a social media break, voluntarily or not

Social media breaks more common among teens than you might think

I did wonder whether my youngest teenage son would return from a recent week-long service trip on which electronic devices were banned quivering from some sort of social media withdrawal, but he survived just fine and the salmon in Washington State thank him for his efforts.

Despite what you might see all around you, teens taking either voluntary or involuntary hiatuses from social media apparently isn't entirely unusual: A new survey of nearly 800 Americans between the ages of 13 and 17 found that 58% of them reported taking significant breaks from the likes of Snapchat and Instagram.

What's more, 65% of those teens claimed to have done so voluntarily, according to the Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research survey. Also, one in five teens who haven't taken a break say they would like to do so.

Reasons cited for voluntarily taking a break include social media getting in the way of school work, drama getting to be too much and just plain getting worn out following it all. Involuntarily breaks typically happened as a result of parents taking away their devices or smartphones, etc., being broken or lost.

Those who voluntarily took a break reported feeling refreshed, while those forced to give up their social media said they were anxious and felt like they were missing out.

As for my kid, he said taking a break wasn't so bad since he was so busy and among many friends, though he did seem to jump right back in without skipping a beat. There he and his friend were last night, sitting one in front of the other in my car, SnapChatting with each other and having some laughs.

MORE: Facebook able to target emotionally vulnerable teens for ads, leaked document reveals

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