In the Metro newspaper, today (11/9/15) was an article, ‘on the effects of social media usage on teenagers.’
The study outlined in the paper highlights the growing concern of social media and our reliance on it. Discussing the effect on our younger generation and the correlation between social media and anxiety with teenagers.
The study states that not only does social media cause teenagers to worry about ‘being in the loop’, but the pressures put on them to always be available’. This leads to adolescence checking their phone at night, impacting on their quality of sleep, then causing sleep deprivation which has been linked to an increased vulnerability to ‘depression and anxiety’.
Our culture values information technology to such an extent that, for most of us, it has become a part of everyday life. So much so that checking social media when watching television (double screening), or when talking to someone physically has become commonplace.
Many are unaware of the pressure put on us to be always available. Not to mention the effect of the dopamine-filled notifications we are hit with when checking our social media pages, emails or smartphones.
I feel this is a growing concern in regards to our physical and mental health. We are growing to connect more with our virtual identities using social media. I feel this is because many of us gain more pleasure from our virtual interactions that our physical ones. This lead to us neglecting our physical health; For example lack of sleep and general agitation by not being connected to the internet. We are spending more time than ever propping up or virtual identities and neglecting our real-world commitments.