Adolescent Social Media Use and Suicide Risk - NAMI-NYC

Adolescent Social Media Use and Suicide Risk


An AFSP NYC Chapter Research Connection

Rates of suicide among adolescents have increased over the past decade. This increase has coincided with the widespread adoption of social media, leading many to question a potential link. However, researchers have only recently begun to investigate associations between teenagers’ social media use and risk for suicidal thoughts and behaviors.

This presentation will provide a brief overview of the current state of the research literature on this topic, highlighting the latest findings, as well as gaps in knowledge that still remain. Dr. Jacqueline Nesi will discuss the ways in which youths’ peer relationships are being shaped by digital tools, and potential implications of these changes for youth suicide risk. She will present recent findings from her AFSP-funded fellowship examining the social media experiences of adolescents with recent suicidal ideation or behavior. Her work utilizes qualitative interviews, self-report measures, and analysis of social media data to identify online social factors that may create risk for, or protect against, suicidal thoughts and behavior among adolescents.

Jacqueline (Jackie) Nesi, PhD is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Psychiatry and Human Behavior at Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University. She received her PhD in Clinical Psychology from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and her BA in Psychology from Harvard University. Dr. Nesi’s research examines the role of social media in adolescents’ peer relationships and mental health, with a focus on depression and suicidal thoughts and behavior. Her work has been funded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH), National Science Foundation (NSF), and the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention (AFSP). She has published in numerous peer-reviewed journals, including Journal of Adolescent Health and Journal of Clinical Child and Adolescent Psychology.

June 8, 2021