Can Social Media Affect Mental Health and Self-Esteem? - Essay Sample

Published: 2023-01-28
Can Social Media Affect Mental Health and Self-Esteem? - Essay Sample
Type of paper:  Essay
Categories:  Mental health Social media
Pages: 5
Wordcount: 1174 words
10 min read

With using social media, we, people, are linked to each other and devices all around the world. However, they have a positive and negative effect on our life. In early days that companies introduced their social media applications to connect people and support them around the world with sharing audio, video, and images, nobody could think about the effect of them on people. Cyber bullying and making a comparison, loneliness with having fake friends and sleep scarcity are issues that are affecting mental health and self-confidence of social media users such as Instagram, Facebook, and YouTube. Using social media more than two hours a day causes mental health and psychological problems (Firestone).

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When we compare ourselves with others in social media affects our self-confidence. We present our self how we want to be with virtual friends and virtual body. We need to be careful of what we are presenting of our self overtimes. An identity that we present in virtual life should not be too far from our original identity because it perceives our social media followers (Schultze). I should not forget the person whom I follow to be my friend has also his/her social friend who can affect me and my followers. Although occasionally we would like to look at our memories with friend or family to remember what happened in past, looking at Social media like Facebook and Instagram effect on our well-being when we open our application and see comments people left for us. We should be careful about who we follow as a friend because cyberbullying happen in these cases when someone who we followed without knowing, post us an unexpected negative or harmful comment or try to use our private information which causes anxiety and mentally affect us. Sometimes a joking comments cyberbullying the person. Also, browsing in our friends' profile and find pictures together give the person solitude feeling, and affect mentally that why friends did not invite her/him in that event. Today's social media all posted pictures and news are in perfect shape to be accepted by the audience according to comments and number of likes each post get is a direct effect on the person, especially teenagers' self-esteem. Being in a perfect size as a model or having a luxury car or glamorous traveling images are unimportant activities which are visibly effected on the audience especially teenagers to compare themselves with others.

Social media should make us supportive and more connected to our friends instead of giving us loneliness feeling. It is like a mosaic of connections that can be strong and permanent or temporary (Latterell). Sometimes the person is very different from whom we know in real life. Each of us has an identity that might be different from what we present at social media or in another word, virtual world. Controlling the virtual character and building a social media audience is with that virtual identity. So, we need to be conscious about which we follow as a friend. Sometimes you need a second opinion to help you. Another time an important thing occurs in your life that you do not want your social media audience to be aware of it. You should be careful of whom you make your friends on Facebook or Instagram because those fake friends can post you any comment that might affect your mind and cause mental health issues. When we are sick, injured or need help family and friends in real life will help us quickly if we inform them, but it is not same about social media friend. When you post a comment or ask something, sometimes it takes days to respond to you. Many of us want to take the best picture and edit it to share in our social media, so we spend time to have a good result on our picture instead of enjoying the moment we are with our friends and family, which is a wrong habit I do when I am in concert, museum or party. In this case, we preferred to have a nice picture to share in social media that nobody demanded us, instead of being around family and make a memorable time with their company. After we post those pictures, we are excited to see how many people will like it and if it is not our expected, it directly affects our morality and self-esteem. So, we need to balance our relationship with a friend in real life and social media.

Moreover, Technology affects human sleep. Today many individuals carry their phones to their bedrooms, and continue using them before they sleep. Most people use them for social media even during the late hours. Social media specifically YouTube, and Facebook directly associated with sleep quality. According to Firestone article, "Poor mental health can lead to poor sleep and poor sleep can lead to states of poor mental health" (Firestone). When individuals look at the phones and read anxious topics at night or early in the morning, they are physically and emotionally affected in the brain. It causes not to sleep or feel tired after asleep. Moreover, people spend less time to sleep when they spend by using social media platforms at night than they probably need. Also, despite most phones having special screens and gimmicks to reduce the blue rays in the phones, the blue light from screen effect on sleep hormones (Firestone). The blue light tricks the brain into thinking that it is still day-time, and therefore, keeping the body awake. Poor sleep causes mental health problems. It is advisable that people, who have trouble in logging off the social media platforms in the evening, should ensure that they reduce the backlight of their devices. Reducing the light enables the human body and mind to get into a sleep mode. Besides, people should keep their phones away from their bedrooms to avoid using phones at night.

Overall, spending time in social media besides effects on mental health and self-esteem has positive points that we need to replace it with bad habits. We use Facebook, Instagram and YouTube to connect with people from different religions and communities, especially social media are very effective to share, advertise, and aware people about our business. Families who live far away from each other can now link to each other easily thought eh social media platforms. The social media has allowed young people to come together and share ideas, common beliefs and issues affecting them and their communities. People with similar interests and needs can come up with different groups that address their areas of interests and as a result, they form a community. Moreover, using the social media platform creates awareness among people of everything new that is happening around them. Awareness enhances self-growth and self-growth and self -development. Also, businesses have gained a reputation through online by motivating their customers to share their experiences about the company products, and as a result, they can attract new potential consumers. The social media has, therefore, boosted growth and profitability in various industries.

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