Social Media: Leisure or addiction

Social Media: Leisure or addiction

NASHIK: Social Media platforms are a go-to place for every teenager these days. More than interacting sites, these platforms are being treated equivalent to necessity goods. From morning to night, one thing constant among teenagers is the social media sites. With changing times, the constant need to stay updated and connected with the world has turned these sites into an addiction for the youngsters.

In the recent scenario where some social media apps like Whatsapp, Instagram, and Facebook stopped working for hours due to technical glitches, youngsters stormed onto Twitter and Telegram. This act shows how restless and addicted the new generation has become. While these apps stopped working for the first time on 6th October, 70 million users registered themselves on Telegram in a night’s time.

The need to stay connected and update their whereabouts consistently has overpowered the youngsters’ ability to think rationally. Even though these websites are mere entertainment and connection platforms, anything in excess quantity can surely harm us differently. To understand the reason behind the increased addiction level and ways to curb it, Deshdoot Times spoke to Taruna Samnotra, Clinical Psychologist and Trainer.

To begin with, she stated that one of the reasons for the rise in addiction levels is increased ‘screen dependency.’ As the pandemic shifted everything online, the screen time among teens increased as they needed to attend the classes/lectures online. However, the education of this lot has been affected as they don’t attend lectures sincerely. They want to stay up-to-date and connected 24/7 with the world.

As a result, any technical glitch arises; they become anxious and feel alienated. Everyone starts calling each other and check their internet signals to rectify the problem. They miss out on the quality time they can spend with their families or engage in other fruitful activities. As these apps stopped working for a while, they jumped onto other apps. This act explains how restless and anxious they became in this period. Social media addiction has become similar to drugs, and with the increasing dependency levels, youngsters become more anxious and restless.

Social Media Fasting

Speaking of solutions, Taruna stated that the recent shutdown of apps was a lesson for many people as it showed them a clear picture of their addiction level. To limit usage, one needs to start ‘Social Media Fasting,' i.e., staying away from the social media for a few hours should be observed.

Gradually increasing the time of social media fasting will help them desensitise and reduce anxiety levels when not connected with the social world through internet. After a particular time, the social media sites should be put to rest. This will also bring in lifestyle changes i.e. sleep and wake-up time will change and eventually physical and mental health will improve.

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