Teenagers and Social Media: The Pros and Cons

A close up of people typing on their phones. Learn how a counselor for teens in Huntsville, AL can offer support with addressing social media anxiety in teens. Search for therapy for teenagers in Huntsville, AL or "teenage counseling in Huntsville, AL" to learn more.

Social media has been impacting the world since the early 2000s.

It began with only adult usage but has since trickled down to children and teenagers. Now in 2023, social media plays a significant role in the culture of teenagers

About 90 percent of teens between the ages of 13-17 use social media platforms. Most teens have mobile devices with internet capabilities: cell phones, i-pads, tablets, and smartwatches. The average American spends about 4 hours a day utilizing social media. Teenagers typically double those numbers. There are some pros to your teens having access to social media, but there are also a few cons. 

Benefits of Social Media

Friends smile around one another while taking pictures on their phone. This could represent the benefits of social media for teens. Learn how a counselor for teens in Huntsville, AL can offer support with addressing anxiety. Contact one to learn about therapy for teenagers in Huntsville, AL today.Billions of people worldwide use social media to share information, stay connected, make new connections, network, develop interests, learn, and entertainment. 

Social media provides teens with an instant connection to others through photos, videos, and status updates. Many teenagers consider these social media platforms vital to their development and relationships. Social media that is entertaining and distracting also can minimize teenage depression and anxiety. It frequently provides a space for teens to escape reality and reduce stress. 

Social Media Harms

Although social media can be considered suitable for teens, it can also become a slippery slope into a danger zone. It can affect teens negatively and possibly even risk their safety. 

Potential risks of social media include:

  • Exposure to harmful or inappropriate content can alter their behavior and thinking. 
  • Cyberbullying has ultimately increased the risk of teenage depression and higher suicide rates. 
  • Exposure to an excessive amount of advertisement.
  • Interacting with dangerous people.
  • Communicating with individuals pretending to be someone else is “catfishing.”
  • Identity theft and hacking.

Because teenagers lack impulse control, they often post and share intimate photos and highly personal information. Since teens are still developing mentally and emotionally, they often share these things without considering consequences or concern for privacy. How teenagers interact on social media increases the chances of the above dangers. 

A teen hides her face while her phone lays on the other end of a bed. Contact a counselor for teens in Huntsville, AL to learn more about the benefits of therapy for teenagers in Huntsville, AL.How Can I Support My Teenager on Social Media?

It is critical for parents to monitor and support their teenagers as they interact on social media. There are many ways to help teens utilize social media platforms responsibly and limit the unfavorable effects. 

Talk about social media:

Explain to your teen how social media and the internet works. Many teenagers do not understand that what they put on the internet is there forever, even if they delete it. Explain to them that there are different types of predators on the internet that will take advantage of the information they share on these platforms. Remind them that social media is full of unrealistic expectations and that they do not have to feel pressured into mimicking what they see.

Set expectations and boundaries:

Discourage your teenager from gossiping, cyberbullying, spreading inaccurate information, and creating a false identity. Have conversations about what things are appropriate to share online and what is considered inappropriate. Create a routine that sets boundaries for their social media usage. Keep in mind that teens are still sponges. They learn a lot from what they see and hear around them. Set an example for your teen as their parent by following these boundaries and expectations.

Monitor your teen’s social media accounts:

Many teenagers take on social media personas and are not always their authentic selves. Explain to your teen that you will check their social media accounts regularly. Doing this ensures that you are aware of what your teen is putting on the internet, who they are communicating with online, and their exposure. 

The culture of the teenage experience has drastically changed over the years, but the development of teens has not. Keep that in mind as you help your teen navigate these life experiences.

A close up of people smiling while social media emotes leap from their phones. Learn how a counselor for teens in Huntsville, AL can offer support with addressing social media anxiety in teens. Search for therapy for teenagers in Huntsville, AL or "teenage counseling in Huntsville, AL" to learn more. Begin Working With A Counselor for Teens in Huntsville, AL

Creating healthier boundaries with social media can be much easier said than done. Our team of caring therapists understands the challenges teens can face. This is why we are happy to offer support from our Huntsville, AL-based practice. You can start your therapy journey by following these simple steps:

  1. Contact Aspire Counseling 
  2. Meet with a caring counselor for teens
  3. Start receiving the support your teen deserves

Other Services Offered with Aspire Counseling

Therapy for teenagers isn’t the only service our team offers. We know that there are multiple mental health concerns you may experience. This is why we are happy to offer a variety of services including marriage and couples counselingindividual counselinganger management therapyanger management classes, and depression therapy. We also offer support with continuing educationovercoming eating disorders, and offer online clinical supervision for social workers. Visit our blog or FAQ for more helpful info! If you need more information about our rates, accepted insurance, and services or are ready to begin counseling services, please do not hesitate to call or visit our blog for more information.

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1955 Rideout Dr. Ste 400
Huntsville, AL 35806

(256) 212-0567

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