Surgeon General Wants To Add Tobacco-Style Warning To Social Media Sites

Project Healthy Minds' World Mental Health Day Festival 2023

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U.S. Surgeon General Vivek Murthy has urged Congress to mandate tobacco-style warnings for social media platforms. In an op-ed published in The New York Times, Murthy highlighted the urgent mental health crisis among young people, attributing social media as a significant contributor.

Murthy envisions a warning that would alert users to the potential mental health harms of these platforms. He believes such a label would serve as a regular reminder to parents and adolescents that the safety of social media has not been definitively proven.

In his New York Times piece, Murthy also suggested that phone use should be banned in schools and that parents should restrict children from using devices during meals and bedtime. He acknowledged the lack of academic consensus on the impact of these platforms and called for more research.

This comes after Murthy published a public health advisory in 2023, which found a link between teenage social media use and poor mental health. However, he emphasized that in an emergency, action must be taken based on the best available information, even if it is not perfect.

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