What You Should Know Be On the Lookout


Have you ever tried to talk to your child, but their focus was glued to a screen? Losing your child's attention to social networking can be frustrating. Maybe you think that this type of interaction is simply the new normal. The truth is that while commonplace, this behavior is also potentially hazardous to your child or teen's well-being.

Girl with phone

Statistics1

  • 15-19 year olds spend an average of 3 hours/day on social media sites
  • 61% of Facebook users have to check their account at least once a day
  • 5 million images are uploaded on Instagram each day
  • 45% of users check their timeline while eating
  • 37% of students admitted that their social media updates were more interesting than a classroom lecture
  • 4 out of 5 students experience negative side effects when disconnecting from technology for a day

Issues with Unchecked Social Media Usage

People who have an addiction to one thing are more likely to develop other addictions; social media addiction is no different. There are many studies that focus on how social media affects our lives and explore the problems that can arise from unhealthy social media practices. Excessive social media use has been reported to cause feelings of depression, confusion, insecurity, panic, loneliness, dependence, and symptoms of withdrawal.

10 WAYS SOCIAL MEDIA AFFECTS MENTAL HEALTH2

  1. Addictive
  2. Causes us to compare ourselves to others
  3. Makes us restless
  4. Can lead to cyberbullying
  5. Glamorizes drug and alcohol use
  6. Can make us unhappy and less satisfied with our own lives
  7. Can lead to a fear of missing out (FOMO)
  8. Can lead to multitasking and thinly spread focus
  9. Enhances connectivity (which can be both good and bad)
  10. Can help with socialization (yet we lose the ability to converse in person)

This doesn't mean that you need to keep your kids from using social media. In fact, social media can be a great way for children to connect with their friends and the world. The issues that stem from unhealthy online practices can be negated if you teach your children how to use these technologies in a healthy way. Want to know more? Click here for tips on how to guide your child towards healthy social media practices.