One of the most controversial topics on earth. Should teens use social media? I believe that social media is a healthy environment for teens because it is a place where you learn and can express yourself. It creates happiness socially and physically. It is an area of belonging where people can express themselves and build relationships. And it is educational. Although some may argue that it brings teens into topics they shouldn't be learning about, they do learn the healthy lifestyle and the good in what they should do.
Social media has proven to make teens happy, which is good for teens because during the tough times of middle school and all the stress building up, there is barely any time for yourself, and that small amount of minutes on social media could help. Although this won't occur if your scroll passively during down times, a lot of time is spent on your phone talking to friends and going on social media, and because of this it becomes easy to gain happiness because there is a lot of scrolling, and it's not just passive observations.
Social media helps you with mental health, which is very good for teens because they get to see other people with the same problem, they can talk with other people on discussion boards about these issues, and they can get help with their problems. For teens, this is very good because there is much more to life than they think, and they learn that from all these lessons and topics online, which can impact how they act and how they deal with stress. This is very helpful for teens. Nataly Kogan an author who talked about happiness and social media said: “Feeling connected to others is one of the main foundations for our emotional and physical well-being” (‘How Social Media Can Make You Happier’). She later mentions how we consume the content we are observing, which makes us feel connected to more people, which makes them happy because we are commenting on others’ posts and discussions, and this brings joy to them as we see that we are doing something which is good because it creates one more source of happiness for teens. For teens, it is actually very tough to find something that will make them happy.
Furthermore, social media creates an area of belonging where teens can express themselves and build relationships. Social media shows teenagers a space to represent themselves and express themselves in the public. From that, they can find a sense of belonging where they always feel included with the people online, whether it's a group with their friends, online discussion boards, Instagram comments, or YouTube comments. Feeling included is very important because teens decide how they feel about themselves in large part by how their people react to them and how people treat them. With the inclusion of all these opportunities, teens will always feel they have someone to talk to and they will feel good about themselves because they know they have company. Because of the many discussions and chats on social media, there is a lot of genuine support given by friends, which is very helpful to the individual's feelings.
Social media also helps teens express themselves. According to the Washington Post, “The popularity of fan fiction (original stories based on existing material that people write and upload online) proves how strong the desire is for self-expression. Producers and performers can satisfy this need through social media. Digital technology allows kids to share their work with a wider audience” (Knorr, 2018). This shows how kids expressing themselves is important because of how they learn to communicate with others find people with their interests and have conversations. This is all because of the connections through social media, which proves how much of a difference social media really makes. This proves how social media creates an area of belonging where teens can express themselves and build relationships.
Because of the variety of pages on Instagram, Snapchat, and Facebook, there is no geographic limitation. There is so much to see about the things around you, and there is so much to learn about the countries you didn't know and interesting facts about them, which are really good because it makes your brain stronger as you are getting important facts and information into your head.
Moreover, from all these learning methods, tutorials, and resources shared through social apps and YouTube, kids will learn strategies that will make most things easy for them and it will help them a lot daily. Social media can also, if used in a certain way, help students with subjects they are working on in school. They slowly absorb information and will be able to use it as an advantage in class and get better grades.
Social media is educational because students learn about their bodies. They see the success and failures of getting fat and how it happens. Daily, they see healthy habits/ diets they can follow. Not even that but they learn what is bad for them and how it affects them in the sport they play or just how it affects them on a daily basis. They learn the many important things that without social media will be very hard to learn, but because of the absorption of the users, it comes straight to them and is slowly being glued in their heads, which is very good for a teen who is slowly developing their brain.
Although social media can expose teens to very dangerous and unhealthy topics, it also shows them how to go against such things as they are shown. Because of the various teens and adults using the app, it majorly talks about adults’ lifestyles and the teens learn from what happens when adults do something bad or what those bad things are. But because of the many pages and accounts on Facebook and Instagram, there are pages that show how these unhealthy topics like drugs, bullying, and salvage activities. It does show all of these and how many of these rappers and artists smoke and drink. But there are also many pages that post how the doses can affect you and how there is a healthy lifestyle that will be good for you and beneficial.
Summing up, social media is good for teens because it creates happiness, an area of belonging where teens can express themselves and build relationships, and it can help educationally. This can make a difference in the public because it will make people much smarter more social and will decrease one of the earth’s biggest killers – depression. We should care because this will help advance quicker to our future, will spread every new idea or concept quickly, and teens will catch on to the many things they learn. It is very important because one day these teens will be the leaders of the generation. If we put teens on social media, we will have better, happier, more social, and much smarter generations to come.
- Aacap. Role Models and Children, www.aacap.org/aacap/families_and_youth/facts_for_families/fff-guide/children-and-role-models-099.aspx
- “How Social Media Can Make You Happier”. Happier, www.happier.com/blog/how-social-media-can-make-you-happier/
- Hwang, Lillian Steenblik. “Analyze This: Most Teens Have Been Cyberbullied”. Science News for Students, www.sciencenewsforstudents.org/blog/analyze/analyze-most-teens-have-been-cyberbullied
- Knorr, Caroline. “Five Ways Social Media Can Be Good for Teens”. The Washington Post, WP Company, 19 Mar. 2018, www.washingtonpost.com/news/parenting/wp/2018/03/19/5-ways-social-media-can-be-good-for-teens/?noredirect=on&utm_term=.717584b7cae4
- “Pros and Cons of Social Media & Internet Addiction”. Carrier Clinic®, http://carrierclinic.org/resources/good-bad-in-between-of-social-media/
- “Social Media and Psychology| Our Wired World and Mental Health”. AllPsychologySchools.com, www.allpsychologyschools.com/psychology/social-media-psychology/
- “The Role of Social Media in Education”. LCIBS, 24 Jan. 2019, www.lcibs.co.uk/the-role-of-social-media-in-education/