Todays generation of teenagers are consumed by electronics. It seems like every minute of free time is spent on some sort of device, like a phone, computer, television, etc. However, a great portion of people like to spend their time on social media. These distractions relieve peoples feeling of boredrum, either by watching funny videos on Tik-Tok, or chatting with friends on Snap chat or watching your Instagram feed, but at what cost?
Every time we hear a ring come out of our phones, most of the time we have the urge or temptation to immediately check what that notification was. Sometimes, we sit anxiously waiting for a certain person to text back, and any notification raises the hopes that that person responded, even if the notification was not the person. According to www.helpguide.org, “Multiple studies have found a strong link between heavy social media and an increased risk for depression, anxiety, loneliness, self-harm, and even suicidal thoughts. Social media may promote negative experiences such as: Inadequacy about your life or appearance.” For example, lets say one day you are scrolling through your FYP on Tik-Tok and you come across a woman or man with your ideal body type; you may get jealous of that individual and you may feel like what you look like right now isn’t good enough. What we see on our screens can very negatively impact the way we perceive ourselves and our surroundings.
Staying on social media all throughout the day and night can also negatively impact our sleep schedule. As reported by www.sutterhealth.org, “Device screens produce blue light, Dr. Cooper says, which is the part of the light spectrum most active in our sleep cycle. Stimulation of this part of the brain suppresses production of melatonin, making it difficult for many people to “turn off” their brains and fall asleep.” Without sleep, it is very hard for the brain to function properly; sleep is necessary for development, cognition, performance, your psychological state and more. Lack of sleep can cause mental health issues to arise like depression, bipolar disorder, and anxiety disorders.
Social media can be addicting to a lot of teenagers, so it is important to monitor their use of electronics especially in the night to minimize the effect that devices appear to have on mental health.