TikTok has introduced a suite of services to assist users who are dealing with mental health difficulties or suicidal thoughts. Guides to wellbeing and support for persons suffering from eating problems are among the characteristics.
When users search for terms like “suicide,” a search intervention function links them to support services. The move comes as Instagram, a competitor, faces new scrutiny over its impact on users’ well-being.
“We care profoundly about our community, and we’re always looking for innovative methods to nourish their well-being,” TikTok said in the release. “As a result, we’re taking extra steps to make it easier for individuals to locate resources on TikTok when they need them.”
An extended guide on eating disorders and a function that will connect users to local help, such as a Crisis Text Line, if they search for phrases like suicide, are among the additional resources, which the business said will be rolled out globally in the coming months.
TikTok, like its other social media sites, has come under fire for the negative effects it can have on its users’ mental health, particularly teens.
Heavy social media use was deemed to be damaging to youngsters’ mental health in a report released earlier this year by the Education Policy Institute and The Prince’s Trust.
Regardless of a young person’s mental health, it was associated to low wellbeing and self-esteem, with more girls reporting emotions of melancholy and hopelessness, according to the study.
The admission by TikTok comes as The Wall Street Journal revealed that Instagram has consistently found that its platform can be hazardous to the mental health of its teenage users in specific conditions.
According to the report, the business has been researching the app’s impact on the mental health of its younger users for at least two years. According to the report, research has consistently shown that it is hazardous to a high proportion of users, particularly teenage girls.
Instagram acknowledged the existence of study cited by The Wall Street Journal in a long response, but claimed the piece “focuses on a narrow collection of findings and presents them in a bad way.”
“It reflects our dedication to understanding complicated and challenging topics young people may struggle with, and informs all of the work we undertake to help those facing these issues,” the social media company stated.