Most children smoke and parents don’t know it

#socialmedia #kids #children #NotForUsButForOurChildren



Most children smoke and parents don’t know it.

Just as secondhand smoke can lead to cancer in non-smokers, social media similarly affects children, even those without a smartphone. They get exposed to it through other kids and people who casually share trending videos. These children, being naturally curious, often find themselves watching one video after another on someone else's device. If you want to prevent your kids from going down this rabbit hole, a temptation even adults struggle with, it's crucial to talk to them. Often, there's nothing truly 'social' about social media. Unlike real-life social interactions, which involve a balance of group dynamics, social media tends to create a divide between performers and their audience (fans, followers). In social contexts, we're usually mindful of the ages and demographics of participants, tailoring topics or visuals accordingly. Conversations naturally adjust to a PG rating to suit everyone's comfort, much like how smoking in a public airport is restricted to designated enclosed areas due to its dangers. Yet, for social media, which can have more insidious and long-term effects on children, no such stringent measures exist. This is why I believe social media access should require age verification, much like alcohol or cigarettes. This could involve showing an ID or using other live technologies, even if it seems intrusive. While this may raise privacy concerns, we must weigh these against the mental well-being of our children. If it's true that our thoughts shape who we are, then we should encourage our kids to step away from secondary screens just as they would from secondhand smoke. For parents, ignorance isn't an excuse. Regular discussions about the allure of secondary screens can help your loved ones develop the skill to discern and filter unavoidable interactions due to proximity.