Social Media Detrimental to Teens


Kiera Roux

Social Media Detrimental

Anyone that knows teens, knows their love of social media. Look around at any high school, when students aren’t in class they are scrolling through Tiktok, checking Instagram, sending selfies on Snapchat, or watching videos on Youtube. This obsession has fundamentally changed the way that teens interact in society, especially with the continuation of pandemic social distancing restrictions.

Social media has played a huge part in my early teen and adolescent years. I got my Instagram and Snapchat accounts when I was in 7th grade, and soon became addicted to my phone. Instead of going outside and being present with my surroundings, I would spend time mindlessly going through my phone. During my freshman and sophomore years of high school, I continued down this path, and in hindsight, I realize how much it affected my health. My grades suffered significantly, as they were not a top priority for me: I didn’t study for tests, I didn’t do assignments, and the fatigue I suffered made it impossible to concentrate on my teachers. My social life was also impacted; although on paper it seemed like I was doing well, with hundreds of Snapchat streaks and many DM group chats, I was longing for more meaningful social interactions. Feeling unfulfilled, I became irritable and easily agitated. I just wasn’t happy with my relationships and life in general.

These trends worsened as the pandemic began. The absence of face-to-face interaction made social media and the internet my only outlet for socialization. With this move, I began to compare myself more and more to the people on my feed, as no one was around me to ground me in reality. This proved detrimental to my self-esteem and self-concept.

By the beginning of my junior year, I had fully begun to fully understand the disastrous impact that social media had on me – and I began deactivating my accounts. 4 months later, I can safely say that this was the best decision I have ever made. The way that I see myself has improved significantly. I interact more with others, and I am more at peace. Although challenging at first, others should do the same and stop using social media.

The data shows that my experience with social media is not uncommon. According to, people that use social media have increased mental health struggles, with a 13-66% increase in rates of depression. Rates of anxiety and depression have skyrocketed since the advent of social media. In 2000, the rate of depression among teens was 13%. In 2020, it was a whopping 31%. Studies also show that use of social media is linked to lower self-esteem, dissatisfaction, and lack of affection.

The plethora of negative effects derived from social media outweigh the few benefits that come from using it. Teens are torturing themselves, making them vunerable to mental issues, and are being led down a dangerous path. This must stop. We all must break away from the bondage social media and set ourselves free.