Doomscrolling meaning, impact on your mental health

Doomscrolling is the act of consistently consuming large amounts of negative online news, impacting the mental health of an individual. It is also known as doomsurfing, and has become a topic of conversation as it’s negatively impacting the mental well-being of individuals. Dr Kedar Tilwe, consultant psychiatrist, Fortis Hospital Mulund and Hiranandani Hospital, Vashi, breaks it down for you.

The reason why people are spending time doomscrolling

The reasons for doomsurfing vary from morbid curiosity with negative news to naturally being  predisposed to pick up potential threats in our environment. As a result, bad news may unconsciously get people’s attention while surfing online.

Your three-step guide to overcome doomsurfing

  •  Awareness

Being aware of the sort of content you are looking up is important.

  •  Look up light-hearted stories

Consciously looking up some light-hearted material such as comic strips or serials, can also be of use.

Assess authenticity of the source for the information

Assessing the authenticity and reliability of the information and critical appraisal of the news, may sometimes help you gain a new perspective.

To sum up, be conscious about things you choose to read. Discuss all the news you come across, not just the morbid ones.  Try reading or looking up more light-hearted genres whenever possible. Keep implementing digital detox routines as and when you can. Avoid constantly looking up a barrage of negative news and views. This can help boost your self-esteem, confidence, and give you a renewed sense of hope for the future. It  may also help reduce signs of depression and anxiety.