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Understanding the Impact of Excessive Social Media Exposure on Young Kids

Spy Fone at       Sep 2 2020 7:30PM

Understanding the Impact of Excessive Social Media Exposure on Young Kids

As social media platforms become more and more popular with each passing day, an ever-increasing number of kids can be expected to join these platforms and share content. While exposure to social media definitely has its share of pros, too much of it can be damaging, particularly for young and impressionable kids.

These days, most parents are quick to buy their children smartphones, which allows the little ones the freedom to set up their social media accounts and use them at will. Lenient parents who don’t want to invade their children’s privacy are often unaware of the dangers posed by excessive exposure to and use of social media. So, here are some of the negative effects that children may experience from the overuse of social media.

Addiction

Social media is not just about staying in touch with friends and family members. A big chunk of involves viewing others’ content and giving it likes, reactions, and shares. Experts say that these responses trigger the release of the neurotransmitter known as dopamine inside the brain, which results in temporary euphoric feelings.
To enjoy these short-bursts of euphoria again and again, children may become totally addicted to various social media platforms. As a result, they may give up on a lot of their favorite real-world interests and end up spending hours every day in the virtual world.

Anxiety and depression

In the quest for more likes, a lot of people on social media keep uploading pictures of their valuable personal possessions or videos of their recent travel experiences. Viewing such content time and again breeds a comparative way of thinking and many young kids may develop inferiority complexes because of this train of thought.
For example, a kid who belongs to a family that barely earns enough to make ends meet may feel quite low if he sees his friends’ pictures that feature their fancy houses and possessions. Too much of such content can bring about bouts of severe anxiety and depression.

Victim of cyberbullying

Just because cyberbullying takes place in the virtual world doesn’t mean that it’s not real. In recent years, cases of cyberbullying have skyrocketed around the world and they have particularly affected kids.
Combined with the detrimental effects on children’s mental health, cyberbullying can greatly increase the risks of vulnerable children resorting to self-harm. In the worst cases, children may also experience suicidal thoughts.
Apart from these three major negatives associated with overexposure to social media, there is also the risk of sharing personal data with strangers, who may be stalkers in disguise. Parents should talk to their children and encourage moderation, as it’s almost impossible in today’s times to expect children to stay completely cut off from social media.

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