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Social Media and Kids

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social media, kids, teens, relationships

The Surgeon General has issued a report on the effects of social media on kids. Children using social media often feel worse about themselves and their friendships. And since it’s addictive, they can’t turn it off.

Here are the high points of the report. Social media…

  • Exposes children to inappropriate content.
  • Exacerbates feelings of dissatisfaction with their body, especially in adolescent girls.
  • Provides a space for predators to target children.
  • May be over-stimulating in a way that resembles addiction.
  • Can create problems with sleep and the ability to focus.

family gathering, family dinner, no social media use, social media free zone, social media and kids

To ameliorate the situation, parents can nurture in-person relationships by limiting social media use at the dinner table and family gatherings and other tech-free zones; teach and model online etiquette, and encourage children to report inappropriate content.

The Surgeon General is calling for technology companies and policy makers to establish safety guidelines to protect children.

The full report is readily available online.

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Author: Martha Childers

Martha Childers, EdS, LPC is a multicultural psychotherapist specializing in couples, grief and caregiver stress. Martha is a licensed professional counselor in Missouri and Kansas. She received her masters and education specialist degrees in counseling psychology from the University of Missouri – Kansas City. She practiced Zen through a variety of Japanese traditional arts for 3-1/2 years. Since that time, mindfulness has been an integral part of her life. Her interest in human nature, beliefs, and life styles led her to become a counselor.

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