Social Media Obsession Can Lead to Depression for Teens

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Social media can be an unhealthy factor in a teenager’s everyday life. The number one target for social media sites is teenagers. From sunrise to sunset most teenagers are absorbed with that little device that is as big as the average hand.

The most popular social media sites among teenagers are Instagram and Snapchat, and now, studies are indicating that an obsession with those sites can lead to depression, especially for young teens.

National Public Radios’s health correspondent Patti Neighmond has reported that “a computer, cell phone or tablet – might have contributed to an uptick in symptoms of depression and suicidal thoughts over the last several years among teens, especially among girls.” She Spending continuous hours on cellular devices blocks teens from the real world. This should be a warning to parents to portray the affects that mobile devices have on their children.

A look at the power that Instagram has over some teenagers makes the depression theory more understandable. Instagram can be a fun app where people post photos, browse their friends’ and celebrities’ pages, and like and comment on the various posts they run across.

That is not the case in modern day society. Jean Twenge, a psychologist at San Diego State University, states that “for girls, a lot of social media revolves around concerns about popularity – am I going to get likes on this photograph, do I look good enough in this picture?” These questions that go through a young girl’s mind and can not only lead to depression, but also to suicidal thoughts. The social media obsessed teen becomes too focused on what random individuals think of them, and if they are not satisfied, then they go into stress and anxiety mode.

Additionally, teenagers spending excessive time dwelling on other people’s opinions and perceptions of them can lead to a decrease in their social life and school life. Twenge believes that teenagers need to put down their phones and engage in actual face-to-face social interactions more often rather than sitting around twiddling their little thumbs as they “like” photos and post comments.

In order to have a healthy lifestyle in this day and age, physical activities such as sports or even taking a walk can help keep teenagers from slipping into a social media induced depression. So, now is the time for teens to put the phones down and focus on themselves and not what others think of them.

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