The average American spends 2.5 hours on social media daily. Teens are on social sites about 8 hours a day. Furthermore, studies show that 26% of social media users are between 18 and 29. Spending so much time on social media can affect mental health. Psychologists are especially concerned about people under 25 spending so much time on social media because their brains are still developing.
Overwhelmed by Drama
About 33% of teens report being overwhelmed by the amount of drama on social media. Being constantly exposed to drama can lead to PTSD, inability to focus, anxiety, depression and low self-esteem.
Feel Left Out
Another 33% of teens say that watching what their friends do on social media makes them feel left out. Researchers have found that social rejection can lead to anger, anxiety, depression, jealousy and sadness.
Pressure to Post Often
About 33% of teens say they feel the need to post content frequently that will get likes and that their friends will comment on. When that does not happen, teens can feel angry, anxious, depressed, jealous and sad. Studies show that people who are socially unacceptable perform poorly on intelligence tests.
Feel Worse About Themselves
Research reveals that teens who use social media frequently often feel worse about themselves. Teens may believe that they are not worthy of being loved. Furthermore, they may feel sad and struggle to find anything that makes them really happy.
What can parents and caregivers do?
Parents and caregivers need to actively engage with their teens by building a home environment where teens want to be involved with their families. Furthermore, parents are encouraged to set a limit on screen time. Being a good role model is a terrific place to start.
If you feel your teen is mentally unhealthy, call us. We would love to discuss how counseling may help.