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Social Media Affects Teens’ Mental Health

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Social Media Affects Teens’ Mental Health

Madison RItchey, Staff Writer

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In the past week, I have spent 22 hours, and 33 minutes just viewing some sort of social media platform. Whether it be Facebook, Snapchat, Instagram, Twitter, etc., America as a whole, spends far too much time on social media. With Apple’s new iOS 12 update that came out with a feature called Screentime, it made it apparent to all of us just how much time we are wasting on our phones.

20% of teenagers suffer from depression, 25% of teenagers suffer from anxiety, and many others suffer from eating disorders, insomnia, etc. However, can we really blame social media for these statistics? Maybe not completely, however, these mental disorders can be stimulated by just viewing social media.

Have you ever been scrolling through Instagram, and get jealous of other people’s looks, skills, or just wish you had their life in general? This is where the depression comes in, envy ties in with how you view yourself. What about viewing your Snapchat stories; you see all of your friends out having fun, and you instantly get jealous and maybe even lonely. The fear of missing out, or FOMO, is when someone is either not in-the-know or is out of touch with some social events, experiences, and interactions. FOMO is a real thing, and social media is the root of a lot of it.

Social Media is addictive and unhealthy. Even the physical act of viewing it before you go to bed at night, is taking a toll on how much sleep you get nightly. Social Media has decreased the amount of legitimate human interaction; we all now consider communication as tagging someone in a funny post, or doing the bare minimum to interact, using these social platforms.

Sure social media is fun and a great way to store memories, however are you really monitoring yourself on how much time you use on it daily? I’m guilty of spending far too much of my day with my eyes focused on a screen, but it’s not too late to fix this issue. Put the phone down, log out of your social media apps, go be productive and see if these mental health rates decrease!

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