Social Media and Teens – (from article, Our Kids in Crisis, by Stephen Perrine NYT)
According to a CDC report in October 2021
From 2010 and 2020 suicide rates among teens had risen 53%. Then came the pandemic.
Nearly 1- in-10 high school students admitted they had tried to take their own lives in the previous 12 months and 1 - 5 had seriously considered it.
We teens have superpowers granted by an array of social media apps on our smartphone.
Snapchat lets us see where our friends are, who is hanging out with whom, so we know if we are being excluded.
Instagram give us the power to compare our lives with others who post filtered, idealized images of themselves
Tik Tok Allows us to endlessly scroll posts that cater to our obsessions, no matter how dark or damaging.
Social media allows us to communicate with others anywhere, anytime, often against the wishes of our parents.
It allows us to reach out, but we can also be reached by bullies. Now we can be harassed anytime, anywhere.
Algorithms feed us a diet of content about our deepest passions, fears and insecurities. Scammers and sexual predators find it easy to access children. The National Center for Missing & Exploited Children (NCM&EC) reported a 97.5% increase in online enticement.
Self-harm is up 180 %*, Boys and girls have higher rates of anxiety and depression.
With 2 hours a day of social media use there is often no related increase in poor mental health. But when daily use goes to 3 or more hours, the increase in mental illness is often quite sharp.
However, it’s more than just smart phones, social media, fomo, and technology, there’s teacher burnout, overcrowding of schools, active shooter drills, and real mass shootings, a pandemic, the political divides, angry adults everywhere fighting on planes, global warming, wars, etc. there isn’t a safe place and social media amplifies all of these anxieties.
What can we possibly do? Become aware of overuse, if you feel it dragging you down don’t use it, save yourself….
Find an appropriate balance Unplug, and unwind, be kind to your mind
*- Jonathan Haidt, Professor NY University
Write something about yourself. No need to be fancy, just an overview.