Social media has become very popular among kids. Back in the time, Facebook would be a popular social media site among children because it allowed them to befriend others – a good and easy way to build your network – but recently, young children have taken to Instagram and Twitter.
It is quite surprising to see that every child has their own social media accounts and they cannot imagine their life without it, but the fact is that the world without social media actually exists, and you can easily feel a part of it; in fact, you all had been once before the age of the internet.
Now the question is why you all are so addicted to social media that you cannot imagine your life without it. Human beings love interaction, and when you interact with someone, it releases dopamine in your brain.
Since it makes you pleased, your brain keeps sending your signals to do it over and over to feel that level of pleasure. Since social media provides you with an infinite opportunity to interact with people, this excess use exploits your natural inclination for social contacts.
The excess of everything is bad for your overall health. Likewise, the excess use of social media is also deleterious for the mental health of your children.
Excess social media use can result in cyberbullying, name-calling, spreading rumours, receiving unsolicited explicit images, and much more. These events can take a toll on the mental health of your children. This is why it is essential to take into account certain steps, so your children do not fall prey to them.
Tips to protect your children’s mental health from the harm of social media
Here are some of the tips that you can use to protect your children’s mental health from the exploitation of social media accounts:
- Set the time limit spent on social media
You should set the time limit spent on social media for your children. This is quite essential if you want to protect their mental health. Studies have discovered that the excess use of social media accounts make users depressive and fill them with negative thoughts.
Even a slight reduction in time spent on social media accounts can make them feel more positive and better. Try to reduce the time spent on social media by 30 minutes. Ask them not to run after their mobile phones as a notification beeps.
This sort of behaviour shows that they are obsessed with the online world, which distracts them from the real world. Make sure that you have set a fixed time slot for them about using social media, and they do not bother about it the rest of the day. Studies have also reported that the reduced time helps them feel less depressed and lonely.
- Educate your children
One of the real challenges of using social media accounts is that children start comparing themselves with others, which can be extremely detrimental to their mental health. They can start doubting their self-image.
They would feel like people their age, and they are losers, cannot do anything, and cannot become successful in life have left them behind. These detrimental thoughts can sabotage their self-image.
This is why it is crucial to educate your children on what they do not have to do in order to protect their mental health. You should ask your children how using social media makes them feel. If negative thoughts start flooding their mind, you should immediately understand that the usage is going in a negative way and curb it for a while.
The social comparison factor affects each person differently. Some feel encouraged to do something better than others, while some get depressed. You need to figure out how it is affecting the thinking and behaviour of your child.
- Tell your kids social media is not real
Social media activities by other people influence children often. You should educate your children that social media is not real, so they do not need to take things seriously they come across through it. Do not hesitate to tell them that people share biased perspectives. Things are not real on social media accounts, so they should not affect their life at all.
- Monitor the activities of your children
Telling your children what is right and wrong one thing and ensuring them they are not being affected by social media is the other. You will have to monitor the activities of your children to ensure that they are not being affected by social media activities.
Many parents do not mind their children using expensive iPods and smartphones to use social media, and for that, some of them take out 24-hour loans in Ireland. This is not bad, but at the same time, you should be watchful of the activities of your kids.
Keep tabs on what kind of chats they are having with their friends, what kind of posts, including conversations they like and comment on. If you find something negative like cyberbullying or explicit content, you should restrict your children from using it.
- Identify the harmful signs of using social media
As a parent, you should keep observing the behaviour of your children. Studies have shown that the excess use of social media can interfere with the ability of your children to interact with your others in person. They will prefer staying isolated from the group.
If you notice such symptoms, you should understand that now is the time for reducing the time spent on social media by your children.
The bottom line
As a parent, it is your responsibility to protect your children from the harmful effects of excessively using social media platforms.
If you do not want to see their mental health affected by it and funding medical bills with emergency loans in Ireland, you should be watchful of their activities.
Apart from keeping tabs on their activities, you should educate them about the hazardous effects of excessive use of social media.