Social networks negatively influence the self-esteem of young people

The Internet and new technologies have brought a new way of understanding life. Nowadays, people must not only worry about their image on a day-to-day basis, they must also manage their participation in platforms such as social networks. A situation that is negatively influencing young people, who are experiencing negative consequences of their activity on these websites.

This is revealed by the Royal Society for Public Health, RSPH, in a new study where he analyzed the behavior of young people in relation to their use of social networks. Anxiety, low self-esteem and the constant feeling of losing something. All these effects were noticed by the researchers who carried out this work.

Constantly connected

RSPH carried out this study with the participation of 1,479 young people between 14 and 24 years old. All of them had to answer a test on the use of new technologies, participation in social networks and mental state. Questions such as anxiety level and sleep quality were also present in this questionnaire that sought to deepen this aspect.

91% of the participants admitted that the priority use of the new technologies was to manage their profile in social networks. Regarding mental health, the three most observed consequences among the participants was a lower self-esteem, a feeling of anguish when thinking that something is being lost or the suffering of a case of cyberbullying, with all the effects that this entails.

From RSPH stands out how in recent years the levels of anxiety have grown in a 70%, coinciding with the expansion of social networks and new technologies. The researchers point out that one of the habitual tendencies is not to want to miss anything in this digital world, to want to answer all the messages that arrive and constantly update their profiles on these platforms.

Constant connection

The expansion of social networks and new technologies has not only influenced the quality of mental health. The physical integrity of young people has also been altered, especially in the quality of sleep of these generations. One in five participants in this work acknowledged waking up at dawn to check messages from their devices.

This situation is directly related, according to RSPH, to the great expansion of new technologies. Young people who want it can connect constantly without worrying about barriers like the battery. If the smarthpone is turned off, you can use the tablet while charging this terminal, and vice versa. In conclusion, a lot of hours are spent managing this social life.

Image culture

This study indicates that another of the dangers to expose young people to social networks is the alteration of their own perception. Those who access these platforms want to look their best in the photos they upload, and this usually results in an obsession to change their appearance and adjust to fashions, and even ask parents to undergo cosmetic surgery.

"Social networks have become a space where relationships are formed and built, an identity is formed, young people express themselves and learn about the world around them, all of this activity is intrinsically linked to the mental health of these generations ", Explain Shirley Cramer, director of RSPH. Therefore this body requests the introduction of these tools:

- Introduction of a warning when young people are making abusive use of social networks.

- Tools that could identify those users who began to experience mental problems through the information presented in their posts.

- Detection of digitally manipulated photos, sign of an excessive concern for the image.

Tools that ultimately seek to know who is being negatively influenced by their activity in social networks. The early detection would initiate with equal speed treatments to prevent the mental health of young people suffer too much and mechanisms can be put in place where both parents and educational professionals converge.

Damián Montero

Video: Social Media and How it Negatively Impacts Teens' Self- Esteem

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