Everyone is fond of using Facebook to reconnect with old friends and stuff but according to the latest study of the American Psychological Association, the social networking site can do more harm than good to teenagers.
The findings, which were presented over the weekend at the American Psychological Association convention, laid out how social networking sites can both harm and help teens.
Among the adverse effects:
- Teens who are heavy gamers or Facebook users have more trouble sleeping, higher levels of anxiety, depression, and stomach aches.
- Young adults and teens who spend their days inside Facebook are more narcissistic and show more signs of other psychological disorders, including antisocial behaviors, mania, and aggressive tendencies.
- Students who use more technology are likely to miss more school.
- The more teens and adults use Facebook, the more likely they are to also use alcohol.
- Students from junior high through college age were observed to generally check social networks or text messages every few minutes while studying, leading to lower test performance than students who focus for longer periods of time.
- The average teen sends 2000 texts per month, which can lead to problems communicating with family and even carpal tunnel syndrome in a few cases.
However, a few positive byproducts of social networking includes the surprising notion that young people can learn “virtual empathy” that can even carry ever to the real world. It is also a helpful tool for introvert students to communicate and connect with other kids. And most importantly, Facebook has been used successfully as a teaching tool.
The convention emphasized to parents to keep their kids’ “Facebook” time safe and healthy and that the ratio of “parent listen to parent talk” should be at least five-to-one.