The Perils of Doomscrolling and Ways to Combat It

I found myself looking for ads about doom-scrolling and ways to stop on social media. Incredibly ironic, no? Considering the platforms are built to make us continue doomscrolling, and the companies selling us ways to stop know this, which is why they are on the platforms in the first place.

Then… I was wondering, what exactly is doomscrolling? In classic Ariel Knows Nothing fashion, I created a blog about it, working in tandem with my new close friend, ChatGPT. 

What is Doomscrolling?

Doomscrolling, the habit of endlessly scrolling through negative news and social media, has become a prevalent issue in our digital age. While staying informed is essential, this constant exposure to distressing information can take a severe toll on our mental health. Understanding the dangers of doomscrolling and learning how to combat it is crucial for maintaining a healthy digital lifestyle.

Doomscrolling refers to the compulsion to keep scrolling through bad news, which often leads to increased anxiety and stress. This behavior is driven by a desire to stay informed and the addictive nature of social media algorithms that prioritize sensational content. 

I have found myself doing this a lot more during the COVID-19 pandemic. Then, for a while, I was able to stop. However, since October 7th and the war between Israel and Hamas, I keep getting sucked in, like an alcoholic waiting for his next drink at a crowded bar. Add in the campus protests, the war between Russia and Ukraine, and insert conflicting American topics such as abortion rights and the presidential election, and you can find yourself sucked in as the clock runs rampant. 

The Psychological Impact

Anxiety and Stress

Constant exposure to negative news can heighten feelings of anxiety and stress. The barrage of alarming headlines can make the world seem more dangerous and chaotic than it is.


Regularly consuming harmful content can lead to feelings of hopelessness and depression. Seeing a continuous stream of bad news can create a sense of despair and helplessness.

Sleep Disruption

Engaging in doomscrolling, especially before bed, can disrupt sleep patterns. The blue light from screens and the emotional impact of negative news can make it difficult to unwind and fall asleep.

Strategies to Combat Doomscrolling

Set Time Limits

Use tools like Screen Time on iOS or Digital Wellbeing on Android to set limits on your social media and news consumption. This can help you avoid falling into the doomscrolling trap.

Curate Your Feed

Follow accounts that share positive, uplifting content, and consider unfollowing or muting sources that frequently post distressing news. This can create a more positive online environment.

Practice Mindfulness

Incorporate mindfulness practices like meditation or deep breathing exercises into your daily routine. These can help reduce stress and keep you grounded.

Engage in Offline Activities

Find activities that you enjoy and that keep you away from screens. Reading, exercising, or spending time with loved ones can help break the cycle of doomscrolling.

Digital Detox

Consider taking a digital detox by setting aside specific times each day to disconnect from all screens. This can help you reset and reduce your dependence on constant news updates.

The Benefits of Reducing Doomscrolling

Improved Mental Health

Cutting back on doomscrolling can reduce anxiety and stress. You can focus on positive experiences and relationships with less exposure to negative news.

Better Sleep

Reducing screen time, particularly before bed, can improve sleep quality.

Enhanced Productivity

Spending less time on social media frees up time for more productive activities, like exercise, leading to a greater sense of accomplishment.

Practical Tips to Stop Doomscrolling

Identify Triggers

Recognize what prompts your doomscrolling habit. Is it boredom, anxiety, or something else? Understanding your triggers can help you address the root cause.

Replace Negative Content

Seek out positive content to replace the negative. Follow accounts that share inspiring stories or educational material that interests you.

Set Boundaries

Use apps and tools to set boundaries with technology. Apps like Forest or StayFocusd can help limit access to distracting websites.

Practice Self-Care

Engage in activities that make you feel good and relaxed. Whether taking a bath, sitting in the sauna, walking, or indulging in a hobby, self-care can help reduce the urge to doomscroll.


Doomscrolling is a modern issue that can significantly impact our mental health. By understanding its perils and implementing strategies to combat it, we can foster a healthier relationship with digital media. Remember, while staying informed is important, it should not come at the expense of your mental wellbeing. Prioritize positive content, set boundaries, and take time to disconnect from the digital world.

Author’s Note

I wrote part of this article by myself, and the other with a Yoast SEO optimized ChatGPT bot. I did this because I’m training myself on how to use artificial intelligence tools to make my content creation development faster.

If you want to learn more ways to take back your health in the digital world, check out 10 Health Tips for College and Beyond.

If you want to watch an interesting movie about social media and how it can impact people, check out Not Okay: The Woman Who Wasn’t There.

Stay happy, healthy, and simply lovely, my friends.

All the best,

Ariel Knows Nothing & his new friend, ChatGPT

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