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Influence of Social Media on Children and Adolescents

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Social Media is the new way of learning, communication, expressing, sharing of information and networking. Many parents, however, may not feel the same. There might be some today who underestimate the power of social media or are unable to understand the avenues it opens their children to.  However, there are many parents who are educated or capable enough to understand the importance of social media in our lives today, its potential and possibilities. Both types of parents are of course concerned with the wellbeing of their children and their exposure to the world. If you are concerned the use of social media for your children or adolescents, you can weigh the pros and cons yourself.

Pros:

Social media sites are not just a newly found trend that would wear out soon. It’s a way of life today which offers many benefits to our children and adolescents.

    • Children usually are not very good in communication, so using this platform may help them improve their confidence in communicating with people unknown or known out of their school environment.
    • Children and Adolescents may engage in social activities like fundraising for some charity, volunteering for localised events and other philanthropic activities.
    • Extend friendship with other children with same interests and find a sense of companionship with them in sharing their interests
    • Using social media may also help school going children to fulfil their school related tasks by gathering information from various communities, pages blogs, etc. real life experiences may serve as case studies for their studies, etc.
    • Blogs, podcasts, video games, etc. may open the minds of children to creative ideas. It can be exponential for their creative abilities as well as writing skills of children and adolescents if properly utilised.
    • Social media networking opens endless learning avenues. They can find profiles, pages of their interests and learn more about their passions
    • Adolescents also find an opportunity to assess their health problems anonymously on social media. This may free them from any mental stress or confusions about the physical and mental changing their growing age may be bringing upon them

 

  • Using social media may also improve the

 

Cons:

Apart from the several positive aspects of using social media, there are some negative influences as well to which our adolescents and children are exposed.

  • Cyber Bullying, sexting and online harassment victims are usually teenagers and children. It results in psychosocial outcomes like anxiety, isolation, dishonour, depression and fear, etc.
  • Facebook depression is a term used by researchers today to refer to depression one gets oneself into when seeing peers indulged in interesting activities that they share on Facebook.
  • The online activity is stored online as a digital footprint. For adolescents, this could be harmful to their future careers.
  • Adolescents may not be the able judge what information to share and what not? This may raise privacy concerns for them on social media.
  • Social media may expose children to advertisements inappropriate to their age
  • Use of Social media has led to lesser engagement in physical activities by adolescents

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