Den ensamma generationen: en explorativ studie om psykisk ohälsa, konsumtionsbeteende och sociala medier
Sammanfattning: Recent studies show an increase in debt among young adults, especially young women. The purpose of this study was to examine the relationship between mental health, perceived loneliness, personal financial situation, consumer behavior, the use of social media and how these differ in a gender and generational context. A further aim was to study the interaction between these variables, based on previous research that shows how increased indebtedness has affected us negatively in different ways and how social media may have had an impact on this increased consumerism, as well as increased mental illness and increased loneliness. Consumer behavior is explored by examining Retail Therapy, a coping strategy to promote psychological well-being through shopping. Data for the study was conducted via a web survey where the participants (n = 105) had to answer questions intended to measure the study's variables, this with well-established and validated measurement scales. The results revealed a significant positive correlation between Retail Therapy and the use of social media, and that young adults and women use Retail Therapy to a greater extent. The level of anxiety was also shown to be statistically significant in relation to Retail Therapy. An interaction effect was found between age and gender in relation to loneliness and between age and gender in relation to Retail Therapy. Otherwise, no significant interactions between the variables were found. The findings of the present study can contribute to valuable knowledge about risk factors for over-indebtedness and how over-indebtedness among young adults can be prevented. For example, in healthcare to be able to prevent mental illness at an early stage through interventions to promote healthy consumption behavior and social media use.
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