Skip to content
Home » How Does Social Media Use Affect Teenagers?

How Does Social Media Use Affect Teenagers?

How Does Social Media Use Affect Teenagers?

How does social media use affect teenagers? Many parents worry about how exposure to technology might affect their toddler’s development. We know preschoolers are learning new social and cognitive skills at breakneck speed, and we don’t want hours of staring at an iPad in the way of that. But adolescence is also an equally important time of rapid development, and too few of us notice the teen’s use of technology – much more powerful and intimate than being a teenager. A 3-year-old playing with dad’s iPhone – how it affects them. In fact, experts worry that social media and text messages that have become such an integral part of teenagers’ lives could fuel anxiety and lower self-esteem.

Young people report that there may be a good reason for concern. A survey by the Royal Society of Public Health asked 14-24-year-olds in the UK about the impact of social media platforms on their health and well-being. Survey results show that Snapchat, Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram all increase feelings of depression, anxiety, poor body image, and loneliness.

Indirect Communication

Teenagers are masters at keeping busy from after school until bedtime. When they’re not doing their homework (and when they do), they’re online and using their phones, texting, sharing, hanging out, surfing, etc. Of course, before everyone had Instagram accounts, teenagers were busy too, but they were more likely to chat on the phone or meet in person while hanging out at the mall. It may look like a lot of aimless drag, but what they’re doing is experimenting, trying out skills, and succeeding and failing in countless small, real-time interactions that kids are in. Today’s school doesn’t exist. For one thing, modern teenagers are learning to do most of their communication by looking at screens, not other people.

“As a species, we are highly sensitive to reading social cues,” says Catherine Steiner-Adair, EdD, clinical psychologist and author of The Big Disconnect. “There is no doubt that children lack essential social skills. In a way, texting and communicating online does not create nonverbal learning disabilities, but it does put people in situations of nonverbal disabilities, where body language, facial expressions and even Even the smaller voice responses are invisible.

Risk reduction

Admittedly, indirect speech creates an obstacle to clear communication, but that’s not all. Learning to make friends is an important part of growing up, and friendship requires taking risks. That’s true for making new friends, but it’s also true for cultivating friendships. When there’s a problem to deal with, big or small, you need the courage to be honest about your feelings and then listen to what others have to say. Learning how to cross these bridges effectively is part of what makes friendship so fun and exciting and at the same time scary. Dr. Steiner-Adair notes: “Part of having good self-esteem is being able to say what you think and feel even if you don’t agree with the other person or that feels emotionally risky.

But when friendships take place online and via text, children do so in a context without the more personal — and sometimes frightening — aspects of communication. It’s easier to get on your toes when texting, so it’s less risky. You don’t hear or see the effect your words have on others. Since the conversation doesn’t happen in real-time, it may take longer for each party to think about a response. It’s no surprise that kids say calling someone is “too stressful” – it requires more face-to-face communication, and if you’re not used to it, you can feel intimidated. If children don’t practice enough to interact with people and respond to their needs directly and in real-time, many of them will become adults worried about our species’ primary means of communication. : speech. And of course, social negotiations only become riskier as people get older and start navigating relationships and work.

Cyberbullying and impostor syndrome

The other great danger that comes from children who communicate more indirectly is that they become more prone to being cruel. “Kids are texting all kinds of messages that you would never think of saying in front of anyone in a million years,” said Donna Wick, EdD, a clinical and developmental psychologist. She notes that this seems to be especially true for girls, who often don’t like disagreeing with each other in “real life”.

“You hope to teach them that they can disagree without jeopardizing the relationship, but what social media teaches them to do is disagree in more extreme ways and jeopardize the relationship. That’s exactly what you don’t want to happen,” she said.

Dr. Steiner-Adair agrees that girls are particularly at risk. “Girls are more socialized to compare themselves to others, especially girls, to develop their identities, so that makes them more vulnerable to the downsides of all these things.” She warns that a lack of strong self-esteem is often the cause. “We forget that relationship aggression comes from insecurity and feeling bad about ourselves, and wanting to put others down to feel better.”

Acceptance of friends is an important thing for teenagers and many of them care about their image as a cunning politician, and it seems equally serious to them. Add to that the fact that kids these days get actual survey data on how many people like them or how they perceive things like “likes”. That’s enough to make anyone’s head spin. Who wouldn’t want to look cooler if they could? So kids can spend hours pruning their identities online, trying to create an ideal image.

Teenage girls

Teenage girls sift through hundreds of photos, wondering which one to post online. The boys vie for attention as they try to loathe each other, pushing the boundaries as far as possible in an already unrestricted online atmosphere. Children gather together. Teenagers have always done this, but with the advent of social media, they face more opportunities and more pitfalls than ever before. When kids browse their feeds and see how great everyone seems, it only adds to the pressure. We’ve all been worried about the unrealistic ideals that photoshopped magazine designs give our kids, but what about the neighborhood kid who’s also photoshopped? Even more confusing, what about when your profile doesn’t really represent who you feel inside? 

Dr Wick said: “Your teens and especially your early twenties are the years when you are acutely aware of the contrast between your appearance and who you think you are. “It’s similar to ‘imposter syndrome’ in psychology. As you get older and have more control, you start to realize that you’re really good at some things, and then you feel like That gap is closing. Hopefully so. But imagine your deepest fear that you’re not as beautiful as you seem, and then imagine that you need to always look as good as you. this! It’s exhausting.”

As Dr. Steiner-Adair explains, “Self-esteem comes from nurturing who you are.” The more identities you have and the more time you spend pretending to be someone you aren’t, the harder it is to feel good about yourself.

Followed (and ignored)

Another big change that has happened with new technologies and especially smartphones is that we are never truly alone. Kids update their status, share what they see, hear, and read, and have apps that let friends know their specific location on the map at any time. Even if a person doesn’t try to notify their friends, they are never out of the range of a text message. As a result, children feel super connected to each other. The conversation never stops and it always feels like something new is happening.

Dr Wick notes

Dr Wick notes: “Whatever we think of as ‘relationships’ nurtured and in some cases initiated on social media, children are never separated from them. “And that in itself can create anxiety. Everyone needs to get rid of the need for intimacy and connection; alone time to regroup, replenish, and relax. When you don’t have this, it’s easy to become emotionally drained, a breeding ground for anxiety.

It’s amazing how easy it is to feel alone in the midst of all these hyperconnections. On the one hand, children now know for certain that they are being ignored. We all have phones and we all respond pretty quickly, so when you’re waiting for a response that doesn’t come, the silence can be jarring. The silent treatment can be a strategic insult or just an unfortunate side effect of an online teen relationship that starts out intense but then fades.

“In the past, when a guy was going to break up with you, he had to talk to you. Or at least he has to call,” said Dr. Wick. “These days, he can just disappear from your screen and you’ll never get the question ‘What did I do?’ conversation.” Children often imagine the worst of them.

But even if the conversation doesn’t end, staying in a state of anticipation can still cause anxiety. We can feel delayed, we put others behind, and our very human communication needs are effectively delegated there too. 

What parents should do?

Both experts interviewed for this article agreed that the best thing parents can do to reduce technology-related risks is to reduce their own consumption first. It’s up to parents to set a good example of healthy computer use. Most of us check our phone or email too often, be it out of a real hobby or out of habitual anxiety.

Children should get used to seeing our faces, not bowing their heads in front of screens. Set up tech-free zones in the home and tech-free hours when no one is on the phone, including mom and dad. Dr. Steiner-Adair advises: “Don’t walk in the door after work while talking. “Don’t walk in the door after work, say ‘hello’ quickly, then ‘check your email.’ In the morning, get up half an hour earlier than your child and then check your email. Give them your full attention until they’re out. And neither of you should use your phone in your room. Drive to and from school, because this is an important time to be. talk.

Limiting the time you spend connected to your computer not only provides a healthy counterpoint to the technology-obsessed world, but it also strengthens the parent-child bond and makes the child feel safe. than. Children need to know that you are available to help them solve problems, tell about their day or give them a reality check.

Dr. Steiner-Adair.

“It’s the little moments of disconnection, when parents are too focused on their own devices and screens, that dilute the parent-child relationship,” warns Dr. Steiner-Adair. And when kids start looking to the internet for help or to handle whatever comes up during the day, you may not like what’s going on. Dr. Steiner-Adair notes: “Technology can give your child more information than you can and it’s not worth yours.” “He won’t be sensitive to your child’s personality and answer his questions in a developmentally appropriate way.”

Dr. Buck

In addition, Dr. Buck advises delaying the age of first use as much as possible. “I’m using the same advice here as when it comes to kids and alcohol: try to get as far as you can without doing anything.” If your child uses Facebook, Dr. Wick says you should friend your child and follow their page. But she advises against texting unless there’s a cause for concern. “If you have reason to worry, that’s fine, but it’s better to have a good reason. I see elderly parents often watching their children. Parents should start with trust. my child. Not even giving your child the benefit of the doubt is extremely harmful to the relationship. You must feel like your parents thought you were a good boy.

Offline, a helpful tip to help kids build healthy self-esteem is to get them involved in something they care about. It could be sports, music, destroying computers or volunteering, anything that excites them and gives them confidence. . When children learn to feel content about what they can do rather than how they look and what they have, they will be happier and better prepared to succeed in real life. The fact is that most of these activities also involve spending time interacting directly with peers 바카라사이트