Social media causes negative effects

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In recent years, social media has increasingly become more incorporated into everyday life. However, the influence it has on teenagers has become dangerous as it often depicts a perfect life that is seemingly unattainable which can damage teenagers’ self esteem.

The photos that are posted online that shows the perfect life can get thousands and thousands of likes. Seeing the photos with many of likes on them can discourage others as they compare their like numbers to those they see on their screen.

Some people even go so far to pay for fake likes through apps like Real Followers for Instagram. Science Direct said faking likes is because of the association of likes and being socially accepted. When people pay for their numbers to go up, they just want to be accepted by their peers and so buy likes to fit in.

Not only can the number of likes on a photo be harmful, but the photos themselves can cause a lot of harm. There are many photos online posted of beautiful people living a perfect life with expensive cars in expensive houses or exploring the world.

Researcher Jiyoung Chae conducted a study in showing that the levels of jealousy had increased in young teenage girls, while self esteem decreased as they observed social media influencers.

Seeing these beautifully-fit people living a great life can lead people to wish they had that life, which then leads to comparing themselves against these people and being disappointed with the results.

They are disappointed that they do not have a Lamborghini or a Ferrari, that they are not living it up in foreign countries, or that they do not look like the stunning humans they saw on the screen. What is truly sad, however, is what people do to copy the looks of others online.

Psychologist Elizabeth Hirata stated that when people try to copy others, it lowers their self esteem which makes them more unlikely to eat as much as a person with higher self esteem. This can be dangerous because if someone were to not eat enough, it is clearly unhealthy and can lead to bad habits that can lead to illnesses like anorexia nervosa, that can lead to starvation and death.

Even the constant repetition of comparison and sadness can cause body dysmorphia and depression, TinyBuddha said. Body dysmorphia is a mental illness that causes someone to obsess over a flaw that they see, yet may be imagined and minor. Body dysmorphia has not been cured and it is a chronic illness like depression. Telling teenagers to stay off their phones and go outside more is just not a realistic solution. Technology and social media have been more and more fused into our everyday lives. However, to normalize posting the stuff behind the scenes is a good solution. It can show that no one lives a perfect life and that we are all human.

Photos of real life shows that there is no need to be comparing ourselves to only the good parts of people. Everyone has their own struggles and it is something that should be destigmatized for not only people to speak out and raise awareness, but also to show their flaws to others as well.

Showing what goes on behind the curtain and all the imperfections can show that there is nothing to compare yourself to when we are all human. Social media should not be able to be in the way of someone’s self worth and happiness.