Is Social Media Good For You?

Sydnee Ramos, Staff Writer

Most teens if not all teens are on social media nowadays, some for up to 7 hours a day. Even though there is some good about social media like providing ways to stay connected to friends and family, it also has negative effects, especially on teens. 

Depression is one of the main effects social media has on teens. Studies show that heavy social media time has a strong link to depression. Not only does it have a link to depression it also has a link to anxiety and loneliness.

Social media also has an impact on the things that go on in school. Mr.Debrito expressed his thoughts on this saying “social media has a big impact on some of the problems we face in school.” 

Students in this school are constantly on their phones, whether it be in the halls or even in the classroom. Electronics are a big part of our education especially during the time of covid but teens just need to know when to disconnect. 

Social media also affects teens and their sleep, some might stay up all night on social media platforms like TikTok and Snapchat. Some teens don’t know when to shut off their phone and disconnect which has an impact on their sleep patterns and can make them sleep-deprived and in some cases sick.

 I asked the school counselor Mrs. Poyant about social media and how it affects teens and here is what she said.

We are presented with false and unrealistic messages of what people look like and what their lives are like. For adolescents, and really people of all ages, this can make us feel like we are not good-looking enough and our lives are not cool or exciting enough.”

Studies also have shown that teens that are heavily on social media are 3 times more likely to be socially isolated than teens that have a moderate social media time. Students in the school have also told me that almost nothing that is on social media makes them feel good about themselves but also said they wouldn’t be able to live without it.

  I myself have been affected by the things I have seen and witnessed on social media and most teens are. Most of us have been on social media since we were young, at an age where we shouldn’t have. age restrictions can be somewhat useful, but I feel like kids are savvy and are able to get around those restrictions pretty easily. If social media platforms found a way to make age restrictions stricter, younger kids might not be able to get on social media and see these types of false realities.

Social media has some benefits as well though, it gives teens that have trouble with social interaction a way to make friends. It also gives teens a way to stay connected with online friends and family that might not live around their area. There are also a lot of cases of cyberbullying.  I have seen incidents of cyber-bullying, including people saying extremely mean and vile things to a victim and, at times, threatening violence. 

Students at our school said they do not want to disconnect from social media because they wouldn’t know what was going on with people and wouldn’t know what the trends are, but they also said that it affects their mental health.

Anxiety and depression are big factors that play out in our lives. Teens see these effects like stress from school, sports, work, college, and family issues.  Several studies shows that teens and young adults who spend the most time on Instagram, Facebook, and other platforms were shown to have from 13 to 66 percent higher rate of reported depression than those who spend less time. 

Social media can be good for social interaction and to stay connected to friends and family but teens should know when to disconnect because it can have negative effects like depression and increased anxiety.