Social media is making everyone believe that there are certain standards for how to look including body types, hair styles, certain clothes, etc. which leads to many issues and problems. As an effect, social media impacts kids, teens, and adults. This is problematic because teenagers believe they have to look or dress a certain way, if they don’t then they are not considered perfect. According to the article Life Sciences Journal, called, “The Effects of Social Media on Body Image and Mental Health”, “Media portrayal of the “ideal” body type has led to a rise in eating disorders, especially highly in young girls and women.” Eating disorders can become a lifelong challenge and can even become life threatening. Additionally, the article reveals a study performed by the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute found that, “approximately 40% of 9 and 10 year-old girls are already trying to lose weight.” This shows just one reason that social media is putting a big amount of stress on young children, teens, and even adults to be fit in the category of “the beauty standard”.
Social media problems tend to affect men and young boys as well, causing them to think they are not “muscular” enough. They start working out and end up putting a lot of pressure on themselves. As stated in the article, ‘Teens, Body Image and Social media’ by Park Nicollet Melrose Center, 34% of men are dissatisfied with their body. The article also states that over 50% of Americans aren’t satisfied with their weight, even 70% of normal weighted women want to be thinner. It’s not healthy for kids at young ages, teenagers, or even adults to think they aren’t perfect from the way they were born because of what they see on social media.
A 2016 study conducted by Woods and Scott found that young adults with increased use of social media, experienced poorer sleep quality, lower self-esteem and higher levels of anxiety and depression. Kids are still maturing and seeing such things on social media can cause poor body image, and make them feel alone, have high anxiety, loneliness and even start depression. Social media is causing kids to grow up without self respect or confidence and they can end up having a challenging life just from when they’re just developing because of social media portraying false images of people when they post a picture of themselves with the “perfect body”. All of these kids have to deal with these problems without any help, I believe that we should put up posters, make signs, promote activities, and be good role models. This would help kids and developing teenagers not to have to worry about not being called perfect.