It is safe to say that social media is the biggest wave of the 21st century. In fact, 75 percent of teenagers in America currently have profiles on social networking sites (Common Sense Media). Although social media allows us to connect with others and share a part of our lives, there are many negative effects that have a strong influence on people today. Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, and Snapchat holds millions of users and hosts more people every day. Teenagers rely on these platforms for entertainment and communication. Today it is easy to see the youngest generation on advanced devices such as smartphones and tablets. But, some signs are telling us that this strong weighted dependence on social media is getting out of hand.
Social media distracts us from meaningful interactions with people, often promotes misrepresentation, and is even linked to mental health issues. According to Cornell University’s Steven Strogatz, “social media sites can make it more difficult for us to distinguish between the meaningful relationships we foster in the real world, and the numerous casual relationships formed through social media.” It gives us a false sense of connection as we invest so much time and energy into something on a device.
Pop-ups, tabloids, and ads that show up on various mediums of media also often misrepresent and objectify women, forcing unrealistic expectations in our minds.
All of this can lead to an increase in stress, loss of sleep, anxiety, and depression. Investing too much energy into social media can directly affect our health, and this is something most people overlook.