A recent study from the University of Glasgow sheds light on a concerning connection between frequent social media use among adolescents and a heightened propensity for risky decision-making, posing serious threats to their well-being. Examining data spanning from 1997 to 2022, involving 1.4 million adolescents aged 10 to 19, the research unveils a disturbing link between regular social media engagement and a range of risky health behaviors. This includes a surge in underage drinking, drug use, smoking, and instances of anti-social behavior.
The study underscores the far-reaching impact of platforms such as
Instagram, Facebook, TikTok, and others, influencing millions of young minds.
Of particular concern is the exposure to social media content promoting risky
activities, notably evident in the study's findings on alcohol advertisements.
The research, published in BMJ, emphasizes the substantial evidence of harm
associated with such exposure, especially in cases of increased alcohol
consumption and unhealthy eating habits.
For parents, the alarming issue surfaces as the study reveals that
adolescents engaging in social media on a frequent or daily basis are
significantly more likely to partake in risky behaviors. The probabilities are
stark: a 48% increase in the likelihood of alcohol consumption, a 28% increase
in drug use, and a staggering 85% increase in tobacco use compared to those who
use social media infrequently or not daily
. These findings underscore the urgent need for parents to navigate and monitor their children's online activities, recognizing the potential risks and taking proactive measures to ensure their well-being in the digital age.
The Assam Tribune Planet Young Dec 7, 2023