Teens paying more attention to sad faces often lead to depression: Study – Times of India

Brain & Behavior
Children are the worst affected by the current pandemic. In fact a recent report had suggested that children in the age group of 3 to 10 years are most impacted by the lockdown. And this just doesn’t include the compromised education but also social isolation, lack of outdoor activities and boredom. This is inadvertently leading to anxiety and even depression among kids.

But it’s not only the 3-10 age group that’s getting affected by the current pandemic, teens are facing the brunt too. In fact you’d be surprised to know that they feel most affected by seeing sad faces, according to a new study conducted by the researchers from Binghamton University, State University of New York. The team studied attentional biases to emotional stimuli in order to find the markers of risk of depression among teenagers.

The lead author shared that they focused on how sad faces and other attention biases affect a teenager’s response to stress and anxiety, which was studied both in the labs and real world.

According to the report of the study published in Science Daily, the author shared, “If a teenager has a tendency to pay more attention to negative stimuli, then when they experience something stressful they are likely to have a less adaptive response to this stress and show greater increases in depressive symptoms. For example, if two teenagers both have a fight with a friend and one teenager spends more time paying attention to negative stimuli (i.e., sad faces) than the other, then that teenager may show greater increases in depressive symptoms in response to the stressor, potentially because they are paying more attention to the stressor and how the stressor makes them feel.”

In short, if their brain finds it difficult to control the stressors and handle emotions, they find it tough to look away from negative stimuli such as sad faces and get stuck to it.

End of the article

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