The SMD is a short and simple scale to diagnose a disorder in social media use.

Social Media includes any website where messages are posted for a group of people. This includes Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Instagram, and the many other social media websites there are.

The SMD consists of 9 yes/no questions about feelings about social media.

According to the paper by van der Eijnden and colleagues, if you answer 5 or more of the questions with yes, you have a social media disorder.

In the study by van der Eijnden and colleagues with more than a 1000 adolescents (aged 10-17 years old) in The Netherlands, it was found that between 7% and 12% met the criteria of social media disorder.

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It seems that the Social Media Disorder Scale can be used for research, but you need to acknowledge the authors and their research paper when writing about it (References).


This is a simple scale question.

The survey code for PsyToolkit

Copy and paste this code to your PsyToolkit account if you want to use the scale in your own online research project
scale: yesno
- {score=1} yes
- {score=0} no

l: smd9
t: scale yesno
q: Social media refers to internet/mobile phone sites such as Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, Instagram, as well as to blogs.<br><br>
During the past year, have you ...
- regularly found that you can't think of anything else but the moment that you will be able to use social media again?
- regularly felt dissatisfied because you wanted to spend more time on social media?
- often felt bad when you could not use social media?
- tried to spend less time on social media, but failed?
- regularly neglected other activities (e.g. hobbies, sport) because you wanted to use social media?
- regularly had arguments with others because of your social media use?
- regularly lied to your parents or friends about the amount of time you spend on social media?
- often used social media to escape from negative feelings?
- had serious conflict with your parents, brother(s) or sister(s) because of your social media use?

l: smd9score
t: set
- sum $smd9

l: feedback
t: info
q: Your Social Media Disorder Scale score is {$smd9score}<br>
A score of 5 or higher indicates the formal diagnosis of a disordered social media user.<br>
Note that this website is not a medical/mental health service.<br>
If you are concerned, please talk to someone at your school, university, work, etc.<br>
Click the link below to get back to the explanatory PsyToolkit website.


  • van der Eijnden, R.J.J.M, Lemmens, J.S., & Valkenburg, P.M. (2016). The Social Media Disorder Scale. Computers in Human Behavior, 61, 478-487.