Many of us have friends who are extremely proud of themselves due to the fact that they managed to quit social media activities and now are finally able to "live fully in real world", free from addiction. Some of us are these friends.

Well, apparently, getting rid of social media accounts is not such a great achievement - scientific research proves that there are at least 3 ways in which social networks influence our lives and mental health positively.

1. Social Networks Spread Happiness

According to the study from the University of California San Diego (UCSD), social media encourages users to spread happiness. The leader of the reasearch team, James Fowler, explains - when one sees happy status updates of his peers or an interesting positive post, he will most likely post a happy status of his own or share something useful and funny with his subscribers and friends.

It happens, because users don't simply look for other people like themselves on social networks to feel the sense of belonging, they also make an impact on the emotions of other users - and get an emotional change themselves. What is especially interesting, though, it's the fact that positive emotional expressions and posts spread faster and more often than negative ones. If this side of social media influence was not underestimated by scientists, the viral spread of happiness could be used to improve the well-being and mental health of countless social media users all over the world.

2. Social Media Helps to Figure Out Your Psychological Problems

It's not a secret that potential employers often check social media profiles of the candidates that apply for a job at their company in order to find out more about their lifestyle, hobbies and personality. Well, according to a scientific study from the research team at the University of Missouri, Facebook activity can also reveal the true state of user's psychological health.

For example, the research proved that people who tend to share fewer photos and update their status less, who don't have many friends despite the longer profile, suffer from social unhedonia more than those who communicate through social networks more actively.

Study leader Elizabeth Martin claims that social media could be a better tool for professional psychologists than common questionnaires: when self-reporting, patients often misrepresent information - sometimes because they want to look better (or worse), and sometimes because their own memory plays tricks on them.

Social media profiles are a fairer way to find out about patient's social behaviour - and a more efficient one, which means that by researching your account on Facebook your psychologist might help you better.

3. Social Media Can Save From Depression

Somehow people tend to forget what the original purpose of social media was. Communication. Reaching out for people that share your ideas, interests and problems. And those who bear in mind the true purpose of social networks, make the best out of their social media activities.

Perhaps, Dr. Melinda Ring and her son's experience provide most convincing evidence for this thesis. Melinda Ring claims that social media can help teenagers and adults with overcoming depression and anxiety - it did help her son. He built up connections with other people that were dealing with the same problems and offered them support, getting tons of it in return.

Everything has at least two sides and social networks are not an exception. We often hear about bad influence of social media and forget that there are many different ways one can benefit from them. It all depends on how you use them - just don't get carried away and social networks will only bring good things and impressions into your life.