Raising Teenagers: Is Your Child Addicted to Social Media?
As with everything else in life, there can be “too much of a good thing.” Social media, while useful, can become an addiction rather quickly, especially in teenagers.
The Black Hole of Social Media in Teenagers: Causes and Prevention for Parents
Recognizing the signs of addictive social media behaviors are the first step a parent can take in preventing an addiction or intervening in one that is already taking hold. These steps include monitoring the use of social media apps by a teenager, encouraging real life activities so a balance is struck with social media, and of course, checking for the signs of a social media addiction.
Signs of Social Media Addiction
The signs of a social media addiction are: spending too much time checking and rechecking their posts online, becoming agitated when no one responds to their posts, refusing real life events such as sports and time out with friends outside the online world, becoming depressed if for some reason online access is not available for even a short amount of time and immediately checking social media responses and conversations when first rolling out of bed in the morning. Thankfully, new apps are developed that can assist parents in controlling and monitoring how much time is spent by their child online using social media. These apps include:
- Social Fever. This app uses a timer to monitory on time and off time and can be preset to shut off access whenever access to social media needs to be disrupted. Parents can preset times and only allow access to social media for a certain amount of time each day.
- Offtime. This is a Google Play app and can eliminate distractions not just for children and teens, but also for parents. It seems very useful overall, as there are several features that can be used on mobiles as well as tablets and laptops.
- Quality Time. Another app that allows monitoring, however it does not seem to actually block usage, instead the focus in on the monitoring of how much time is spent on social media. Might be a good choice for adults and their usage but seems not that spectacular for children and teens.
- Space. This is an Apple phone app and although it does the same thing as Social Fever above, it does seem by the reviews to have a few glitches. Since it’s geared to Apple also, it won’t be a good choice for Android users. It does tout itself as “breaking phone addiction” but only if the glitches will be fixed and only on Apple mobiles.
- Flipd. This is another Google app and promises distraction blocking. It does not monitor or seem to have the ability to block social media usage entirely. Again, it might be a useful app for adults looking to curb their own usage, but for children and teens, it might not be the best choice.
Whether it’s Instagram, Facebook, SnapChat or any other type of social media, being able to monitor the behavior online of your child, teenager, or perhaps even your own, is a big plus. Time online can be productive, or it can be counterproductive. It’s a fine line between enjoyment and addiction. The apps listed above will give you control, and you will find that your child, teen, or even you will find more enjoyable activities as a result!
Great content social media addiction Michelle! I love that portrait in this article too.
Thoughtfully written blog on the act of balancing social media and real life. Productive or counterproductive use of it can get our teens, and us!, into trouble. Thanks for the tips Michelle!
I know this post is all about teens, but I know many adults (myself included) that can fall into this social media trap as well! Thanks for your kind words, Andrea!
Great information on social media addictions. This is a REAL problem in our society!
Honestly I had no idea these apps existed until I started researching! It blew my mind! I know I can track how long I use social media apps every day, but these apps can really help manage and reward you for better behavior! We all need to learn to be more social instead of sitting behind a screen!
Great information about social media and the time spent. Information on apps are something most people may not know about. Great blog post!!
Hey Shunta! So glad you found this post helpful! Have a great week!
Yes! Great info for kids and adults alike. ?? Screen time can take over our lives very easily! So it is great to use several resources to help us be more aware of ourselves and others so we can limit our screen time! Kudos!
Thanks for your thoughts, Penney! Yep, we’re ALL guilty! Those mobile devices are just so handy andalways with us, so they take over without us even knowing!
Way cool! Some very valid points on helping high school teens!
Frank, I’m glad you found these tips helpful! Thanks for commenting!
What great tips and ways to notice if a teen is addicted to social media. I feel like so many of us have this problem in some way.
You’re right Tonya! Adults can easily become addicted to social media too. I love that many phones track how much time you use each app. It’s a great way to keep track!