Generation Like: Technology Obsession in Teens

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In this day in age technology is all around us, its inescapable whether you’re thirteen or thirty five. People are always on their phones, liking post, commenting, posting and instant messaging. Seems like today's generation born after 2000 were born with Iphones and tablets in their hands. 1996 is said to be the last year that babies pictures were taken with an actual camera, and had to be developed. Look around and even kids as young as five are sitting playing games on a tablet instead of playing at the playground. Parents are so quick to throw a tablet in front of their baby instead of giving him or her some attention.

Teenagers are already filled with emotions and are on an emotional rollercoaster of life. Putting a smart phone in their hands seems like a great idea. Their minds and egos are already bruised, so why not add insult to injury. Kids have what is called having “no filter”, put them behind a screen and you don't know what will happen. In twenty-eighteen just about every teen has some form of a social media account. When parents let their kids go on the internet, most of the time they don’t set blockout times for them to get off and give their brain a rest, and move their muscles. It's becoming a habit that teens would rather be playing candy crush then spending some time outside in the fresh air. This can really damage a child and it's up to the parents and loved ones to help. The effects of using technology as a young teen are having issues with mental health(depression), it may affect your sleeping, affecting social life(via Indirect communication), and having strangers on your friend list.

Mental disorders are something that is on the rise in america. It isn't something that is taken lightly, and is a very serious condition. Since 2010 the amount of teens having at least one mental disorder has nearly doubled to about 18%, now that's just teenagers. When you are young your mental health is very fragile. 50-70% of the American population develop a mental illness between the ages of fourteen and eighteen. They are most likely going to develop depression, feel lonely, or have little to no self-esteem, by their late twenties to early thirties. Not too long ago there was study done in which about 1,500 teens were asked to rate different social platforms on how it affects their mental state “The mental health and wellbeing-related issues consisted of items like: quality and amount of sleep, feelings of loneliness, bullying, fear of missing out (FOMO), anxiety, emotional support, depression, self-expression and so on.”(Stonecipher) That's a lot to take on for someone at such a young age.

Young girls and boys will see these Victoria Secret models, and feel sad, might even go into a depression, because some of these girls will never live up to the unrealistic body image of these women and the guys may never get to be with a woman like that. Also sending them unrealistic expectations for how their body should look and how they should act. When it comes to bullying it seems as if no one is safe. It's easy to be a bully when you're hiding behind a screen. When someone is being a bully, it's most likely because they are unhappy with something about themselves, and they don't know how to deal with it. Some people put their entire life online. Spending anywhere from twenty four hours and longer a week online. Most of the time people don't know how to set limits for themselves, even adults. Parents should be parents

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Parents don't set limits for their teens on when and where they can be online. “Giving kids access to social media, they don't know how to act, they aren't ready for it. Their minds cannot cope with the dopamine.” (Sprake) They also don't know how to set limits for themselves. They are spending all their free time surfing the web, sending snapchats, and favoriting what the top celebrity is tweeting. With smartphones right in our back pocket, we can be online as simple as scanning our fingerprint. Since most teenagers until the age of eighteen go to school as it is required by law, that takes up about five to seven hours of their day. Most likely they are spending their breaks, and lunch on their phones, or even on facebook or texting while they are in class. Kids feel like they ++don't get enough social media time during the day so some might stay up late or even stay up all night watching netflix or youtube videos. It seems like their hands are glued to their phone along with their eyes, that they don't want to put their screen down for even a moment. Studies show that to be well rested for the next day on average you need anywhere from seven to nine hours of sleep. Most people don't even get a full seven hours but instead get on average six to eight hours. Not getting enough sleep is harsh on your body, and is proven to have an effect on your mental state the following day. A problem most people has is that they tend to be on their phone for an average of thirty minutes to an hour, a night before bed. (Helmer) This can disrupt the focus of trying to wind down after a long day. Setting it up to not use your phone the last 2 hours before bed can ensure that you won't be distracted, can work on getting a better night's sleep, and be well rested and prepared to tackle on the new day. When you get anywhere less than six hours of sleep, your brain function is depleted, making it so you are not at your best brain functionality. Which can lead you to be cranky, and no one likes a cranky teen. Lowering your desire to learn, your judgement would be all off and you would want to be that little social butterfly, you always seem to be.

Having a social life ( a social life is a serious condition that involves an excessive amount of time spent with others. Some symptoms include friendships, partying, sexual relationships, and sexual intercourse) not on a screen seems pretty obsolete these days. With all this new advance technology you can talk to someone without ever seeing them face to face. Facebook, Facetime, Instagram, and Twitter are making it harder for people to communicate face to face in real time. Parents try to help by making teens put down their phone at the dinner table, or when they have guest over and they want their undivided attention. “Corresponding with the dramatic uptick in social media usage has been a rise in the percentage of teenagers who say they are distracted by their devices during homework, sleep, and social time, as well as a decline in the percentage who say they prefer to communicate face to face with their friends.” (Herold)

Teenagers themselves are stating that they are distracted during homework and sleeping, but are still not having the self discipline to set boundaries for themselves on how many hours a day they can be on their smartphone. Most teenagers would rather talk to their friends and family through their phones then spend some quality time with them. Spending time stalking their favorite celebrity, or watching youtube videos seems like it would be more fun. While they still meet up and hang out at the mall on saturdays, they are still on their phones, and pretty soon we will be at a point where no one wants to leave their house ever. It all comes down to parents being parents. If they control how long and how often their teen is online, this might fix quite a few troubling things with teenagers.

While parents arent monitoring their kids social media account, they are adding and following people left and right, some without even knowing who is behind the profile. This can be very dangerous as most teens display almost their entire life on their profiles. The school they go to, where they live to hang out after school, some even check in to their house showing the address. Kids are blindly putting their life online. This makes them very vulnerable and possibly putting not only them, but their friends and family in danger. In the film Generation Like, Douglas Rushkoff interviews young teens and showing off how they are liking their favorite artist or actor on facebook, or following a profile on instagram that always post pictures of David Beckham.

Anyone can be behind that profile, that could possibly get information from teens and do bad with it. A teens gets a message on instagram from an anime cartoon fanpage, saying that they have a signed poster from one of their favorite actors, asking if they would like it. Not being careful the teen agrees to meet this individual without knowing their true identity, to claim this prized possession. They kid goes to a nearby park to meet, what he thinks is another kid, but this forty year old man walks up to him knowing his name. The kid begins to talk to him as the man reveals to him he lied about the poster and is trying to kidnap the teen, luckily there were adults around that were able to help, but who know what could have happened to him, all because he liked a page on instagram.

In twenty-eighteen just about every teenager has a social media account. It's becoming a habit that they would rather be playing toon blast then spending some time outside in the fresh air. The effects of using large amounts of technology as a young teen are affecting indirect communication, affecting your sleep schedule, and having mental health issues, such as depression and anxiety. About fifteen hundred teenagers were asked how different social media sites affect their mental health, and the results came back to show that the teens felt lonely, bullying, lack of self-expression, and anxiety. Teens are so engrossed in their phones, they aren't taking the time to enjoy their personal life. If every phone had a time lock on it, that would enable everyone to put them down and get active, exercise the brain, instead of frying it being on a screen twenty-four, seven.

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