How is social media impacting the teenagers of today?
Social media plays a huge role in our everyday lives, especially for teenagers. Applications such as snapchat and Instagram allows us to contact friends, share the events in our lives as well as seeing what is occurring in the lives of others – however is social media detrimental to the mental health of a teenage audience?
The first notable form of social media created was a blogging site called Six Degrees in 1997. Since then apps such as Facebook, Instagram and snapchat began to be available for the wide world to use and love to the extent now that many people’s lives evolve around social media such as social media influencers and content creators. Additionally, celebrities have a wide audience on social media too. And this is where social media becomes dangerous to the youth.
It’s rather logical that a frequent user of social media will only post the “best” images to reflect their happiness, and the use of filters and photoshop create a fake image as well as a negative ideology to younger users of social media. It can make teenagers or anyone in general second guess their happiness, beauty and self worth. This could potentially lead to mental health issues such as body dysmorphia and forms of anxiety for those who do not feel as though they live up to social media’s metaphorical standards. An anonymous source said;
“seeing the best part of other people slightly worries me because when I post, I don’t know what people are thinking when they sit in front of their screen”
But it’s not just the fake appearance of the idols on social media that impact teens, they also affect each other. Cyber bullying is even more detrimental to a teenagers mental health than other factors on social media. The hateful and unneeded comments that are sent to each other over mobile devices and other technologies actually cuts deeper coming from your peers rather than seeing a picture or a person that you don’t really know that well. It actually has been proven that 18% of parents admit that their children have been cyber bullied in 2018, and each year this percentage grows.
So what can we do? In order to abolish these vital issues, we have to learn that it is acceptable to avoid photoshop and filters but moreover, we have to eradicate cyber bulling over social media and by working together, we need to learn to use social media in a positive way instead of abusing the platform – in which cab be used for much greater things