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Effects of Social Media Use on Children and Young People

Paper Type: Free Essay Subject: Young People
Wordcount: 803 words Published: 24th Nov 2020

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My research topic is social media use and how it effects children and youth. Social media use is affecting not only children and youth but myself as well. Social media has many negative effects and outcomes. Social media seems to have become more of an issue and I have seen it everywhere. I have seen people crossing the street and not looking where they are going because they are looking down at their phone. I have also seen families out for dinner and everyone is on their phone. I have seen people fired from a job due to being on their phone. I have personally experienced the negative effects with cyber bullying and because of this experience I want to see what other kinds of effects social media use has on youth and children besides just bullying. The effects social media has on children and youth are important to know so that we can help them. As child and youth care workers it is our job to educate youth on safe internet use because sex trafficking and inappropriate use of media can happen. As child and youth care workers it is up to us to teach young people about the benefits of monitoring their use of social media and if possible, teaching them self-regulating and limiting their social media use.

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In the 2019 study I found was social media and anxiety an article studied by Faazila Fathima in this article they studied if there was a link between social media and anxiety. In this article it talks about the positives in how social media can connect through communication and can be used for entertainment, but also that social media can bring as well as the downfalls which in case is the mental health problems. To conduct this survey, they had 100 participants ages 17-25 that was disturbed though an online link. Throughout this study they found out that 47% of participants spent more than 8 hours on social media and that 47% of participants have more used more than 3 social media sites. They also found out that about 40% of participants became anxious when they were not able to use social media. The researchers also found that participants had feelings of low self-esteem and sometimes had low self-esteem from a result of using an increased social media use They also found that participants of the study were mostly uncomfortable talking face to face communication with others rather than through texting each other. 57% use social media for entertainment and only 20% for information. Throughout this study they did in fact find that social media use and anxiety have a connection to each other, and that addictiveness to social media is increasing and that social media is as well having an effect on mental health. Directions for future study suggests that having scheduled usage of social media sites and for useful purposes other than entertainment will benefit mental health for these youth.

The second 2019 study I found was Frequent Use of Social Networking Sites Is Associated with Poor Psychological Functioning Among Children and Adolescents. This article by Hugues Sampasa-Kanyinga, and Rosamund F. Lewis, studied the relationship between the time spent on Social media, poor mental health and not enough mental support and psychological distress and even suicidal ideation. The study was conducted by collecting students in grade 7-12 who had completed the mental health drug use and health survey. The students were asked how many hours in a day do they spend on social media, ranging from 1-7 hours. The survey also had a questionnaire on how they would rate their mental health or emotional health(citation) To give an idea of how their physiologic stress was they had asked participants over the past 4 weeks displayed symptoms of depression or anxiety. Suicidal ideation was assessed by answering a question about suicide, with yes or no. The results of the study showed that youth who use social networking sites for more than 2 hours a day reported poor self-related mental health, distress, suicidal ideation or the mental health support they need. The research they found is limited due to the fact


  • Fathima, F., Priya, V. V., & Gayathri, R. (2019). Social media and anxiety - A survey. Drug Invention Today, 12(9), 1841–1844. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com.ezpxy.fanshawec.ca/login.aspx?direct=true&db=asn&AN=138949534
  • VAN DEN EIJNDEN, R., KONING, I., DOORNWAARD, S., VAN GURP, F., & BOGT, T. T. (2018). The impact of heavy and disordered use of games and social media on adolescents’ psychological, social, and school functioning. Journal of Behavioral Addictions, 7(3), 697–706. https://doi-org.ezpxy.fanshawec.ca/10.1556/2006.7.2018.65


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