In the present generation, an addiction more dangerous that drugs is social media. Social media has literally handcuffed people to their mobile phones and laptops. After keeping their mobile down, people don’t feel comfortable to sit idle or do some work because they are urged to check to their phones several times. People forget to eat, drink, see time and look around. Phones that were first used for talking has developed over time and in present, even used to kill time. In recent years, after social media platforms like Facebook or Instagram have been developed to provide entertainment and a chance to connect with their friends and family, but have also captured them as prisoners because people cannot imagine their lives without social media.
FACTS ABOUT SOCIAL MEDIA ADDICTON
- It is estimated that over 210 million people worldwide suffer from social media addiction.
- The number of young adults experiencing sleep issues jumped from 26% to 41% since 2015. Social media maybe a boon in some ways but have negative impacts in many ways.
- Teens who spend 5 or more hours per day on their smartphones are 71% more likely to have one risk factor for suicide.
- Globally, people spend an average time of 2hours and 23 minutes on social media and messaging per day.
- 50% of people were caught driving while using their mobile for checking social media.
- 10% of the teenagers check their phones more than 10 times at night.
SYMPTOMS OF SOCIAL MEDIA ADDICTION
- Spending majority time on social media.
- Inability to focus on other things except social media.
- Taking photos almost every time to post it.
- Anger when its usage is reduced.
- Always craving for internet connection.
- The first thing you would open when you get an opportunity.
- The compulsive need to update your every movement everyday.
- Always checking for notification.
- Contacting your friends and being in touch only through social media.
- Increased use of social media even in the midst of family and friends or while even doing other activities.
- A feel of restlessness when you are not using social media.
- Insomnia, headaches, eye related issues are the physical symptoms.
- Not valuing offline relationships.
- Increasing reliance on social media for coping up and solving real life problems.
EFFECTS OF THE ADDICTION
- A person’s concentration totally dedicated to social media cannot be able to focus on any other real life problems or jobs. They live in a world full of likes and comments for their posts that they often forget to live in the real world.
- Ignoring relationships in real life.
- Social media facilitates to compare the real lives of individuals with the filtered, flawless, edited and happy lives of others (which are actually not; no one’s life is perfect) can be detrimental to the mental wellbeing of the self.
- Increase in isolation.
- Reduces work performance.
- Disturbed sleeping pattern.
- Anxiety or depression.
- Reduced physical activity which leads to another set of health issues.
Now, the question comes-How can we prevent ourselves from addiction?
Though it is a very difficult process in this technologically moving world let’s try to follow some steps to avoid addiction:
- Setting a time limit for using social media can greatly help us because once we have a perfect schedule, we try our best to stick to it.
- Delete the apps from your phone if you are too addicted. You can still access them from your laptop but there will be a decrease in time of usage.
- Ensure you spend a lot of time with your loved ones in person.
- Start a new hobby that’s not technology related.
Following these can bring your happy self back to you. Social media is a great technology when u have self-control and you know how to use it positively.