What are the optimal screening tools for social network use disorder (SNUD) in children and adolescents?
In this systematic review of 29 studies and 19 screening tools, the Social Media Disorder Scale–Short Form (SMDS-SF) and Bergen Social Media Addiction Scale–Short Form (BSMAS-SF) showed the best evidence with regard to sound psychometrics.
When taking into account the theoretical foundation, possibility of an external rating, and test-retest reliability as criteria, results suggest that the SMDS is a recommendable screening tool for SNUD in children and adolescents; however, the BSMAS-SF has a better evidence base in terms of criteria, such as cutoff value or clinical validation.
Children and adolescents spend considerable time on the internet, which makes them a highly vulnerable group for the development of problematic usage patterns. A variety of screening methods have already been developed and validated for social network use disorder (SNUD); however, a systematic review of SNUD in younger age groups has not been performed.
To review published reports on screening tools assessing SNUD in children and adolescents with a maximum mean age of 18.9 years.
To identify instruments for the assessment of SNUD, a systematic literature search was conducted in the databases PsycINFO, PubMed, Web of Science, PsycArticles, and Scopus. The final search took place on May 2, 2022. Psychometric properties of available tools were examined and evaluated to derive recommendations for suitable instruments for individuals up to 18 years of age.
A total of 5746 publications were identified, of which 2155 were excluded as duplicates. Of the remaining 3591 nonredundant publications, 3411 studies were assessed as not relevant after title and abstract screening. A full-text analysis of 180 remaining studies classified as potentially eligible resulted in a final inclusion of 29 studies revealing validation evidence for a total of 19 tools. The study quality was mostly moderate. With regard to validation frequency, 3 tools exhibited the largest evidence base: Social Media Disorder Scale (SMDS), the short version of the Bergen Facebook Addiction Scale, and Bergen Social Media Addiction Scale–Short Form (BSMAS-SF). Among these, 1 study tested a parental version (SMDS-P) for its psychometric properties. Taking all criteria into account, the strongest recommendation was made for the SMDS and BSMAS-SF.
Conclusions and Relevance
Results suggest that the SMDS-SF and BSMAS-SF were appropriate screening measures for SNUD. Advantages of the SMDS are the availability of a short version and the possibility of an external parental rating.
Sign in to take quiz and track your certificates
JN Learning™ is the home for CME and MOC from the JAMA Network. Search by specialty or US state and earn AMA PRA Category 1 Credit(s)™ from articles, audio, Clinical Challenges and more. Learn more about CME/MOC
CME Disclosure Statement: Unless noted, all individuals in control of content reported no relevant financial relationships. If applicable, all relevant financial relationships have been mitigated.
Accepted for Publication: October 12, 2022.
Published Online: February 20, 2023. doi:10.1001/jamapediatrics.2022.5741
Correction: This article was corrected on April 24, 2023, to fix an author’s name in the byline.
Corresponding Author: Samantha Schlossarek, MSc, Department of Psychiatry and Psychotherapy, University of Luebeck, Ratzeburger Allee 160, 23538 Luebeck, Germany (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Author Contributions: Ms Schlossarek had full access to all of the data in the study and takes responsibility for the integrity of the data and the accuracy of the data analysis.
Concept and design: Schlossarek, G. Bischof, Brandt, Browne, Christakis, Hurst-Della Pietra, Demetrovics, Rumpf.
Acquisition, analysis, or interpretation of data: Schlossarek, Schmidt, A. Bischof, G. Bischof, Borgwardt, Rumpf.
Drafting of the manuscript: Schlossarek, A. Bischof.
Critical revision of the manuscript for important intellectual content: All authors.
Statistical analysis: Schmidt, G. Bischof.
Obtained funding: Christakis, Hurst-Della Pietra, Rumpf.
Administrative, technical, or material support: Schlossarek, A. Bischof, G. Bischof, Brandt, Borgwardt, Demetrovics.
Supervision: Hurst-Della Pietra, Demetrovics, Rumpf.
Conflict of Interest Disclosures: Ms Schlossarek reported receiving grants from the German Federal Ministry of Health during the conduct of the study. Dr Bischof reported receiving grants from the German Federal Ministry of Health during the conduct of the study. Dr Christakis reported being a member of the Children and Screens advisory board during the conduct of the study. Dr Demetrovics reported receiving grants from Hungarian National Research, Development and Innovation Office, during the conduct of the study; fees to maintain a telephone helpline service for problematic gambling from Szerencsejáték Ltd ELTE Eötvös Loránd University; and funding from Gibraltar Gambling Care Foundation and being involved in research on responsible gambling funded by Szerencsejáték Ltd during the conduct of the study. Dr Rumpf reported receiving grants from the German Ministry of Health, the German Research Foundation, and the German Innovation Fund during the conduct of the study. No other disclosures were reported.
Funding/Support: This work was funded by grant ZMVI1-2517DSM210 from the German Federal Ministry of Health.
Role of the Funder/Sponsor: The funders had no role in the study design and administration, data analysis or interpretation, manuscript writing, or the decision to submit the paper for publication.
Additional Information: This study was conducted as part of the Media Impact Screening Toolkit Workgroup of Children & Screens: Institute of Digital Media and Child Development.
Credit Designation Statement: The American Medical Association designates this Journal-based CME activity activity for a maximum of 1.00 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit(s)™. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.
Successful completion of this CME activity, which includes participation in the evaluation component, enables the participant to earn up to:
It is the CME activity provider's responsibility to submit participant completion information to ACCME for the purpose of granting MOC credit.
You currently have no searches saved.
You currently have no courses saved.