17
Feb
2021

Social Media and the Impact it has on Students

February 17th, 2021 | in Academic Barriers
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Social Media and the Impact it has on Students

 

Tik Tok, Snapchat, Instagram, Twitter, Tumblr and the list goes on and on for apps that are available to students to stay socially connected.  There are many advantages to social media apps such as networking, learning new information, staying connected with friends and sharing information but today I want to speak on the disadvantages and how Social Media is impacting students overall well-being.

 

School Grades

On average a student spends 2-3 hours a day on social media so when you hear the excuse “I don’t have enough time for homework” the first place to dissect is the amount of time spent on social media. Homework takes place after school but if majority of those crucial hours are being spent on social media then that means less time spent on homework and studying for tests and as a result grades start dropping and the student gets into this endless cycle and they don’t know how to get out of it.

 

Sleep and Health

Most students will tell you that they have a hard time going to sleep and waking up in the morning for school. During the day they are exhausted and feeling lethargic. Most likely they are on their phones, laptops, or watching TV until it is time to go to sleep. The impact of blue light causes an alertness and therefore students have a harder time falling asleep and staying asleep. Not getting enough sleep impacts the overall health as students may be too tired for exercise and also end up making poor food choices.  Lack of sleep also has a direct correlation to poor grades as the focus required to retain and learn new information weakens.

 

Social Anxiety

The act of getting “likes” and positive comments on social media provides a psychological high which is like getting a shot of dopamine. When students don’t get the number of notifications they were hoping for their dopamine levels go down and they start to feel down about themselves and feelings of anxiety start to arise. Students start feeling like they are lacking something in their lives when they see their friends/network posting all the great things they are getting or the experiences they are enjoying. If a student suffers from mental health issues being on social media can worsen these symptoms.

 

Bullying

Harassment, spreading of rumors, name calling, and, nonconsensual explicit messages are some of the most common forms of cyberbullying that students face. Cyberbullying can take place on any social media platform and can interfere with concentration in school and cause emotional, physical and behavioral issues. When a student is facing these issues they can start withdrawing from friends, family and activities they one enjoyed. Grades start slipping and they can become moody. Cyberbullying has a direct impact on sleep, appetite, anxiety and stress.

 

What can you do to address the impact of Social Media:

  • Take account of the time you are spending on social media
  • Delete apps that tend to make you anxious
  • Make it a point to put your phone on Do Not Disturb (DND) when doing your homework
  • Keep all electronics out of your sleeping space or put them on DND when you go to bed
  • Make it a rule to only go on social media once you are done all your homework
  • Stay off all electronics at least an hour before going to bed
  • Choose wisely on your followers and friends
  • Be careful on what you post- anything you post becomes your digital footprint
  • Oversharing can be a safety issue, so protect your information and establish boundaries
  • Consult with a parent or an authority figure if you are facing any sort of bullying

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