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Too much social media use exposes children, adolescents to anxiety, depression

Children and adolescents are endangered by too much use of social media at a time when young brains are developing, potentially leading to anxiety and depression, the US surgeon general has warned in an advisory on social media use.

This was contained in a publication in The online peer-reviewed BMJ Journal.

In the save vein, a study published by the Global Academic Group states that in Nigeria, over 78% of the observed and monitored students spent from 3 to 5 hours of their active time on the social media, and, from its findings, it leads to addiction which makes it difficult for students to focus on their studies, thereby reducing their academic performances.

Reacting to the BMJ publication, the United States Surgeon-General,  Dr. Vivek H. Murthy, says, “At this time, we do not yet have enough evidence to determine if social media is sufficiently safe for children and adolescents.”

He noted that American youngsters aged 13 to 16 spend an average of 3.5 hours a day on social media, adding, that government policy makers should set safety standards for social media companies, just as they have for toys and car seats.

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The advisory warned parents, children, and adolescents about excessive use of social media; and called for changes by parents, young users, technology companies, and researchers.

Lending credence to this, founder and Chancellor of the Covenant University, Bishop David Oyedepo, says the present generation is bereft of heroes because of the diverse distractions from social media.

“We have been talking about natural disasters but now, we have one with us that is more deadly than coronavirus as many innocent destinies have been wrecked.

“Many youths today are busy seeking short-cuts; many crave to build skyscrapers without any foundation to sustain them. Cybercrime has been on the increase globally as many youths hate the word ‘work’,” Oyedepo noted.

The church founder admonished young people to seek vision, invest their time and place in real value, rather than spending their valuable time on social media platforms that can rob them of their future.

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