Addicted media: Substances on screen

Allison Optican, Patricia A. Cavazos-Rehg

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review


Social media use is ubiquitous among young people; their online networking about substance use can influence norms toward use and behaviors. The Internet and social media, in particular, are now an integral part of many people’s lives. This is especially the case for young people. Social media use among young people is at an all-time high, with roughly 90% of Americans aged 13-29 years using some form of social media. Research has shown that young people can easily view and interact with substance use content on social media. Not only is substance use frequently discussed on social media sites but also the dialog is generally driven by normalizing and pro-use messages. Repeated observations of pro-substance use messaging could influence the social norms of those who view the content and ultimately result in imitation of the displayed behavior. This chapter provides a comprehensive review of current peer-reviewed literature related to portrayal of substances in the media, with a particular focus on social media, and its potential impact on children and adolescents.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationChild and Adolescent Psychiatry and the Media
Number of pages14
ISBN (Electronic)9780323548540
ISBN (Print)9780323548557
StatePublished - Jan 1 2018


  • Internet
  • Media
  • Social networking
  • Substance use behaviors


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