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How Does Instagram Affect Today's Teenagers: Essay

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Social media has become a big part of our lives today since it came out, it’s something which many people can’t live without anymore. Social media such as Instagram is known to be used for entertaining purposes but today for teenagers it isn’t used for entertaining purpose. Instagram is mostly used by teenagers to show off their beauty, luxury and all the things they have. Instagram has pros but it mostly has cons which are that social media is affecting teenagers body image and mental health, and it is an addictive app which is ruining teenagers’ lives.

Body image is one of the most important things in our life, it’s the way we view ourselves even though society has standards set for us. Social media such as Instagram has become a bad influence on an important topic like body image, teenagers are being pressured to change themselves and become something which they aren’t. Instagram is making many people concerned about why is social media affecting their teenage sons and daughters a lot. Celebrities and many famous influencers show off their bodies on Instagram, which many of them have done plastic surgeries and other types of surgeries on their bodies to make themselves look better. While teenagers are scrolling through celebrities and influencer’s Instagram pages, they look at the celebrities’ posting videos and pictures of the way they look, it makes them wonder about why can’t I look like that or even better than that. Research has found that “together, these results suggest that Instagram usage may negatively influence women’s appearance-related concerns and beliefs” (Fardouly, J. 2017), which means that Instagram is negatively influencing female teenagers based on their appearance.

Teenagers are comparing themselves to celebrities and influencers is one of the reasons which is making their life turn to a negative path. Body image is something which teenagers are afraid to talk about to someone it is also one of the reasons why teenagers have become depressed and are blaming themselves for the way they look, which they aren’t supposed to because looking in a certain is not what matters. Many teenagers hate the way they look after looking at other people’s pictures of them looking perfect. Body image has set a high standard for so many people which is one of the reasons why it is ruining their lives. The high standard which the society has set for people is another reason why the teenagers dress up in large clothes to cover up their bodies because they don’t look better or because they hate when someone looks at them and talks about them. Some teenagers don’t understand why the celebrities and influencers look good is because they are either good at editing their pictures, or they have someone who can edit the way they look to make them look nice and more natural by using a filter and other kinds of tools which are used for editing. As a result of the high standard being set for body image and other things for teenagers and other people, they are becoming victims of depression, anxiety, anger issues, and self-hatred, which isn’t supposed to happen because it’s way too much pressure on a teenager.

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Mental health is another important thing many people have to face in their daily lives and it is causing more problems. Many teenagers are facing mental health which includes depression, anxiety, panic attack, and much more problems related to mental health in their everyday lives which no one can really notice until they’re opened up about properly to someone. Mental health has caused many people to give up on their lives, for example, committing suicide, not interacting with friends or family, and even zoning out everything and everyone around them. Social media is one of the reasons why many teenagers are facing mental health issues. Instagram is triggering mental health, for example, if someone doesn’t get a lot of likes on their picture that they have posted it will trigger their anxiety because of why they didn’t get a lot of likes like the other people around them are getting. Many teenagers are depressed because of their breakups or even friendships that are broken due to certain issues, they’ll be there physically but not mentally, they’ll stop talking to the rest of their friends and loved ones. Research has found that the people who post pictures it defines that some of them are depressed. They’ll post things that have darker colors, some even post stories about what’s going on in their lives. The research also stated that based on the person’s mood and mental health, the person who has depression will only go with darker colors such as grey or black.

The research also found out that “general practitioners were able to correctly rule out depression in non-depressed patients 81% of the time, but only diagnosed depressed patients correctly 42% of the time” (Reece A. G., Danforth C. M., 2017), which means that people who show themselves as that they are not depressed are the ones that have depression. They have also found out that a lot of likes on a picture can make teenagers happy or even sad. Instagram is causing fear within teenagers because every second new thing are uploaded and talked about, and it’s making them think that they’ll miss about the new things that posted or are going on social media. Instagram is also causing teenagers to feel sad because they see other people living their lives happily and are doing what they have planned for themselves. According to the research’s authors, they believe that if someone uses social media like Instagram more than two hours per day, it will affect their mental health, which will cause them to think about suicidal ideas. The research also says that teenagers who compare their happiness and things to their friends who post things online, it ends up affecting the persons their mental health the most because their close one is enjoying their life and they aren’t.

Another reason to believe why social media isn’t good for teenagers is that it causes addiction to your phone and social media like Instagram. Addiction to social media is bad, it will cause problems like sleep problems and mental health problems. According to the research, which did the survey, it states that “86% of students in Ontario visit social media sites daily and about 16 per cent spend five hours a day or more on social media” (‘Is Social Media Addictive?’, n.d., para. 3), which means that the students (teenagers) who are on social media like Instagram can use it for a long time it can be over five or more hours. For some students (teenagers) Instagram is help for them even if they facing mental health issues, Instagram is giving them motivation and fixing their mood, it also helps them concentrate on certain things. The research by the Canadian Mental Health Association discovered that if they used MRI scans to monitor the activity in the reward center of the brain, they can see how it affects teenagers when someone likes something on their social media, whether it will activate their reward part of the brain more or not. Social media is like a drug to the brain, which means that if someone doesn’t follow you or likes your photos and the things you have shared, your brain will have all kinds of thought but apart from that your mood will change from happy to sad or angry and you’ll be pressured by your brain if you are really focused at that one thing.

If the teenagers continue to spend a lot of time on Instagram it will affect their mental health and relations with their loved ones, for example, if the teenager doesn’t spend time around people their family and friends will notice and then they’ll tell them not to use it and it makes the teenager angry. Then the angry teenagers will be on their phone a lot more than they are supposed to be. The addiction to social will also cause the teenager to be distracted from school, homework, and assignments. Social media addiction will make teenagers fall behind in school, it will ruin their future. If students (teenagers) won’t pass classes they won’t be able to graduate from high school and won’t be able to have a chance to be in their dream or favorite program at college or university. If the teenager is always on their Instagram, it will affect the way they think or do things and they u won’t be able to control themselves from the addiction of getting likes or follows. The teenager will also become lazy which will change their body and then they’ll be depressed about their body image or even how they have a mental health problem just because of social media. The addiction will also cause sleeping problems for you, it will ruin the teenager’s day and night, and also it will cause problems for being focused in home, school or outside around everyone.

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How Does Instagram Affect Today’s Teenagers: Essay. (2023, January 31). Edubirdie. Retrieved December 2, 2023, from
“How Does Instagram Affect Today’s Teenagers: Essay.” Edubirdie, 31 Jan. 2023,
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