Facebook is one of the most popular social networks in the world. Not only adults but children and teens use the platform daily. Parents today are more concerned about how Facebook affects their kids now that studies have revealed how social media can harm children’s mental health, body image, and communication abilities.
The first problem is the problem of self-perception. Facebook affects children’s self-esteem, providing a platform to discover other people’s ideas, beliefs, trends, and opinions that can significantly change a child’s future character development. Researchers concluded that young people who spend much time on Facebook distort their assessment of the perception of their self-esteem (Cataldo et al., 2021). Children get jealous of others’ lives or are dissatisfied with their own. The next step involves problematic digital behavior when children only have online friends or participate in online harassment.
Third, after problematic behavior, Facebook can be a cause of depression. It is even called “Facebook depression” – a depression developed from children and teens spending lots of time on social media (Elsayed, 2021). Finally, it results in a feeling of isolation. Those who spend more time on social networks are at risk for problems with social adaptation (Al-Kandari & Al-Sejari, 2020). Such children often lose communication skills, have sleep problems, and have complicated relationships with their parents.
In order to avoid such events, parents should not serve as bad examples by spending all their time on social media. In addition, parents should stop constantly talking about the dangers of social networks; the desire to use them is unlikely to decrease. Children who use social media healthily can benefit from it by enhancing their sense of connectedness and self-esteem.
Increased technology use can create social disconnection in younger and older children, negatively affecting interpersonal and relationship skills development. Social media certainly has its social benefits, but excessive time spent on it can reduce in-person interactions and activities vital for development. Overusing social media, such as Facebook, can result in low self-esteem, problematic behavior, depression, and social isolation.
Al-Kandari, Y. Y., & Al-Sejari, M. M. (2020). Social isolation, social support and their relationship with smartphone addiction. Information, Communication & Society, 1–19.
Cataldo, I., Lepri, B., Neoh, M. J. Y., & Esposito, G. (2021). Social media usage and development of psychiatric disorders in childhood and adolescence: A review. Frontiers in Psychiatry, 11, 1-15.
Elsayed, W. (2021). The negative effects of social media on the social identity of adolescents from the perspective of social work. Heliyon, 7(2), 1-15.