According to Lancet Child & Adolescent Health, social media may be hazardous to your kids. 40% of teens use social media between ages 13-14 and 70% are using it at ages 15-16. Here are the findings:
- Teens that used social media multiple times daily between 13 and 14 were more likely to experience psychological stress and this effect was seen in more girls than boys.
- Girls but not boys between 13-15 years of age who used social media multiple times daily were more likely to experience anxiety, unhappiness and decreased life satisfaction later in life.
- These bad effects were more likely experienced when teens experienced cyber bullying, lack of sleep and decreased physical activity.
Dr’s. Rx: So how can we remedy this situation? One might want to restrict social media in the teenager especially if it is getting in the way of school, family interactions and chores. Even better is to make sure that your kids get adequate sleep and exercise. Finally teaching your children resiliency with cyber bullying is important.
Schools need to have teacher/student counsels where kids can easily report such harassment. This way, bullying can be resolved without suspension or legal action. However, if bullying persists, then the above stronger methods must be introduced. There is a higher incidence of depression and anxiety in both groups. Additionally, in a world where domestic terrorism is rampant, we need to reduce bullying effectively both on line or in the school.