Unit 8 discussion
Due today Sunday @9:45 EST.
This final unit discusses methods to refine your writing for the future. As you finish this class, what are some areas where you see improvement in your writing? As you look at your writing critically, what are some areas where you would like to see improvement? [Last Name] 1
English Composition 1
Research Paper Assignment
Positive and Negative Effects of Teens’ Social Media Usage
Social media has become a fact of life for nearly every citizen. Social media positively
affects teens by teaching them social skills, behavioural skills, and personality management and
implies an adverse impact on individuals. Like other technologies, social media also have a
wrong side that affects the perception of parents and teachers. Along with bringing positivity to
individuals, social media also spreads negativity and distracts their attention. The impact of
social media can be determined by how teens use social media. 97% of teens across the United
States own their mobile phones, and 47% remain online for 24-hours (Mayo). Parents should
track their performance to understand the effects of social media on teens. Some are using social
media for entertainment, while others are misusing the opportunity to watch underage content.
Social media exposes teens to various ranges and allows them to choose what they want to see.
Thus, it is not about social media that affects teens’ behaviour but their content choices. Social
media implies both negative and positive effects on teens that lead to changes in mental,
emotional and psychological changes in personality.
Social media has become an essential part of everyone’s life. A balance must be
maintained to ensure that social media doesn’t take over one’s life; even though social media’s
importance in life and its dependence on it, balance in use brings positive effects. Parents should
track their kids’ performance and guide them regarding their use of social media and its possible
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impact on their lives. Parents should teach their kids about the interference of social media in
their lives and tell them how much time they should spend on social media to avoid a negative
impact on their health and personality. Research says that teens use social media platforms for
seven hours a day, which affects their performance in other areas of life (Academy). Seven hours
spent on social media leaves the least time for other activities such as studies, social engagement
and family times. Social media takes over individuals’ lives and brings a lot of unexpected
The use of social media negatively impacts the mental health of teens. Research (Wiley)
says that 20% of teens having at least one social media account say they have to check their
activity once in three hours to avoid the feeling of anxiety and anxiousness. This feeling is
known as social media anxiety disorder stated to the Anxiety and Depression Association of
America (ADAA) (Wiley). Symptoms of social media anxiety disorders include repetitive
checking of phone, spending six or more hours on social media accounts, withdrawing from
social and family relations, losing interest in academic activities, poor academic performance,
severe nervousness etc. apart from this excessive use of social media among teens leads to severe
Staying online and dependent on social media makes teens emotionally and
psychologically sensitive. They begin to feel things deeply and fall into misunderstanding about
themselves and others. Teens invest their emotions in online relations, and when they get no
response, their real life becomes a mess. They become sensitive towards their bonds, and trust
issues develop. Instead of understanding the fakeness of social media relations, adolescents
perceive their real-life relations as fake, which leads to ignorance and relationship negligence.
Adolescents’ online peer affiliations affect their performance and behaviours in real life. A study
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reveals that students who use social media accounts are less likely to have friends in real life. In
the absence of social media accounts, the feeling of loneliness increases, leaving individuals
mentally disturbed and anxious.
Social media use also challenges the psychological health of adolescents. Research
indicates that teens using social media accounts are less satisfied with their lives. Girls and boys
during 11-16 years of age are open to trust and develop temporary relations. When they find
someone nice to them on social media, they start depending on them mentally, emotionally and
psychologically. Damage to such concerns because for any reason brings severe trauma for
individuals. Researchers are focusing on the age of individuals and their use of social media. Age
implies a more significant influence on the use of social media and its effects on mental and
emotional health. According to an experimental psychologist Amy Orben, We actually
considered that the links between social media and well-being might be different across different
ages and found that is indeed the case (Hughes). In the United States, 9 out of 10 teens spend
most of their day on screens, and there is no one to track their activities. According to the
statement by Amy Orben, the effects of social media use vary from age to age. For example,
suicide is higher among teens who spend 10 hours on screen a day. Adolescents aged 14-19 are
more likely to connect with their smartphones, and minor disturbance forces them to make
significant decisions (Hughes).
Furthermore, research indicates that teens using social media cut their interest in real-life events
that shorten their discussions. Lack of a companion with whom they can share their tensions and
happiness affects their mental peace. And in the end, when they find no cure for their anxieties,
the last option they choose to get rid is suicide.
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Social media use and dependence on social accounts affect the level of happiness. Online
conversations create misunderstanding in individuals that leads to relationship complications.
According to professor Wirtz, most adolescents develop a strict attitude toward everyone. People
who use social media for more than six hours a day are less likely to be happy and satisfied with
their lives. Social media presents fake influencers and perfect/ideal life. And when individuals
fail to get some things in their life, they become reluctant and less happy in their current
situations. The following image illustrates the impact of social media use on happiness;
He further explains that viewing influences posts and updates upsets teens about their
standard of life and forces them to copy them by any means. Some individuals take these
individuals positively by adapting those behaviours, while some go against their norms to follow
those influencers. Three top-most social media websites imply more significant influence on
users includes; Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. According to a statement, The three social
network sites examined Facebook, Twitter and Instagram yielded remarkably convergent
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findings. The more respondents had recently used these sites, either in aggregate or individually,
the more negative effect they reported when they responded to our randomly-timed surveys over
a 10-day period (Sexton). These three social media accounts are in most use by all ages. Teens
and mature adults rely on these social media accounts to get regular updates and get engaged in
different types of content because these three accounts provide a more significant amount of
information and exposure across the world (Sexton).
Along with numerous adverse effects of social media use on teens, there are multiple
positive aspects of social media use. Such as;
i. Confidence building
ii. Identity formation
iii. Competitive personality
iv. Awareness of social trends
While exploring social media accounts, teens interact with several people from different origins.
They learn other things that enhance their personalities and interaction in real life. Social media
interactions improve an individual’s mental and emotional health if it is being used appropriately
and for good. There is a need to understand that social media could bring a lot for an individual if
they try to explore its positive side (Patil).
Interaction with culturally different people improves individuals’ confidence and enables
them to face different situations in their lives. Confidence building is crucial in achieving success
out of the box in the modern world. Social media would allow individuals to stay up-to-date and
active in their fields to participate and learn new things. Having information about things builds
confidence, which is what social media is doing for teens. It is opening gates for flawless
learning from their comfort zone, which would be a plus point for growing and developing.
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Social media makes it easier to access every type of knowledge and information to improve
learning and understanding of the world around.
The second positive effect of social media use on teens is identity formation. The use of
social media has become an essential source for teens’ development and growth. However, it is
the responsibility of parents to teach their children and help them learn about the world around
them. But in the modern world, this task is done by social media. By using social media, teens
can learn everything they need to know about the external environment, challenges, and
opportunities. It serves as a gate of wisdom that helps individuals become self-dependent and
recognize their strength to achieve the best in their lives. The use of social media strengthens
self-representation at different levels in life and enables individuals to self-closure when needed
The use of social media improves the overall personality of teens. Individuals in their
teens learn about their environment and the challenges around them. Early exposure to social
media websites and accounts enables them to explore the world waiting for them and stand
competitively in front of it. Social media helps in developing a competitive personality by
opening everything to explorers. According to research conducted in 2020 says, “autonomy to
explore and experiment with their identities in the space of their own, where they have control
over what, how, and with whom they share information” (Academy). This statement reveals that
social media makes individuals autonomous and independent. It enables them to differentiate
between right and wrong. This is what an individual needs to be successful in the challenging
world. All these strengths and achievements strengthen teens’ emotional, psychological, and
mental health. Despite these positive effects and improvements through social media, its adverse
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effects cannot be overcome. Excessive use of social media is dangerous, and it is also true that it
is difficult to control the use of social media in everyday life.
To conclude, social media implies both negative and positive effects on teens, but most of
the impact is negative, challenging individuals’ mental, emotional, and psychological health. The
paper highlights both positive and negative effects of social media, but the primary focus is on
negative aspects because available literature highlights adverse effects. The paper indicates that
the more time spent on social media, the more life would be difficult. To reduce the negative
impact of social media, it is essential to track teens’ social media activity and set limitations for
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Academy, Newport. How Does Social Media Affect Teenagers? 21 July 2021.
teenagers/. 15 May 2022.
Hughes, Virginia. Does Social Media Make Teens Unhappy? It May Depend on Their Age. 28
March 2022. https://www.nytimes.com/2022/03/28/science/social-media-teens-mental-
health.html. 15 May 2022.
Mayo. Teens and social media use: What’s the impact? 26 February 2022.
social-media-use/art-20474437. 15 May 2022.
Patil, Shoba. A Study on Impact of social media on Teenagers Paperback December 21, 2018.
India: LAP LAMBERT, 2018. PDF.
Postles, Hannah. Research finds that more time spent online makes children less happy with their
lives. 12 April 2017. https://phys.org/news/2017-04-spent-online-children-happy.html. 15
Sexton, Chrissy. How you use social media affects your sense of happiness. 11 March 2020.
happiness/. 15 May 2022.
Wiley, John. Impact of Social Media on Youth Mental Health: Statistics, Tips & Resources.
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ng%20users. 15 May 2022.