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VidCon: Therapists share their concerns about the ‘sensationalization’ of mental health issues on the internet

'I think we’ve taken the word [trigger] a little bit too far.'


Victoria Gagliardo-Silver


Posted on Jun 23, 2022   Updated on Jul 26, 2023, 6:05 pm CDT


This story was originally published on Passionfruit.

Popular therapists and content creators on TikTok who speak on the intersection of social media and mental health have brought their expertise to VidCon. 

In a panel moderated by L.A. Times journalist and TikToker V. Spehar called “Triggered: The Sensationalization of Mental Health Online,” featuring Shani T (@theshaniproject), Dr. J (@amoderntherapist), and Dr. Courtney Tracy (@the.truth.doctor), the creators spoke on mental illness, stigma, trigger warnings, and the popular video-sharing platform.

The creators tackled difficult topics, like the rhetoric that social media contributes to the rise of mental health issues. With a steep increase in mood disorders and suicidal ideations in teens from 2005 to 2017, as reported by AJMC, researchers fear that social media may be to blame. Other concerns include the increase in tic-like behavior in teen girls, akin to creators with Tourettes syndrome they watch online, as reported by Fortune.

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*First Published: Jun 23, 2022, 5:13 pm CDT