With the growing use and reliance on technology in this day and age, it is normal to see teenagers on their phones through nearly all the phases of the day. However, is social media really as social as it seems?

A growing mind should not be exposed to the many dangers that social media poses on its wellbeing. Specifically, when it comes to its detrimental effect on studies. Social media and the constant scrolling that comes along with it, is one of the main reasons why students fail to attain the grades they desire not simply because they can’t put the phone down but also because of how it negatively affects their attention spans. When it comes to studying, it is ideal to have a very good attention span; one that allows you to stay focused and finish the task at hand without getting distracted by the latest text message your friend has sent. However, social media erodes the attention spans of young minds especially since it allows the brain to be filled with useless garbage so much so that the brain is unable to determine what is relevant and what should be filtered out. This in turn leads to exhaustion and fatigue, preventing teenagers from studying as long as they were able to before.

In addition to this, social media is perfect for procrastination. Procrastination is the body’s way of brushing aside a task because of its difficulty or length and trying to avoid it as much as possible. When you have 21 tasks all due in a week or two it is really tempting to pick up any sort of device and see the latest news about famous celebrities or about anything but work. And what the worst thing is that because social media is nearly everywhere, it is easy for people to log into their accounts from almost any device. As a result, it is social media which anchors the many excuses of teenagers’ inability to complete work to a high standard.

However, although social media can be viewed as the culprit to many of our alibis, it also poses many benefits to our developing world, especially when it comes to diversity. With social media providing us with the ability to communicate with those anywhere in the world, it allows us to learn and implement different people’s perspectives and cultures into our lives. Were it not for social media, we wouldn’t know each other as well as we do now.

Furthermore, social media is extremely beneficial as there are many influencers who post factual information that can be learnt from. When asking Maira Ahmed, a student at Eden Girls Leadership Academy, about the factual information she learns online, she responded, ‘It honestly all depends on what side of social media you find yourself on. If you tune your social media accounts to only provide you with beneficial information, they will and that’s exactly what I have done. It really isn’t as hard as it seems.’

As a result, although social media is one of the main reasons of our procrastination, exhaustion, and slow academic performance, if used in the right way it can change our mindsets significantly. So, can we truly blame social media’s influence on us when it is us who choose to navigate its long, distracting roads?