In today’s society, social media is playing an increased role on the way teens think and act. But with more and more social media sites being created and people rallying a message of any sort, it’s hard not to shake the influence they have. We have seen social media’s effect in both a positive and negative light influencing teen drug use.
Not convinced, social media is influencing teens drug addiction whether it’s consciously or subliminally. Here are four reasons why they maybe.
Social media keeps teens connected
The entire purpose of a social media site is to keep its users linked together. Many people all over the world are connected together and sharing their opinions, personal lives and activities. With so many people near and far sharing their habits and life choices it’s hard to resist agreeing or having a mutual feeling on the subject. Social media has formulated a niche drug community best seen on Tumblr where drug content is served frequently. This has made it easy for teens to develop misconceptions about a substance and its effect on their lives.
It represents a lifestyle
Whether it’s a bad or good lifestyle, social media works similarly to advertising. Through its users a certain lifestyle perception is created which greatly influences those involved. For example, a popular social media site teens like to use is Instagram. Anyone can become “insta famous” based on their number of followers and image likes. The accounts that are popular often promote a lifestyle their followers admire and aspire to be apart of or achieve. These “famous” accounts have some weight subliminally on teens because they are subscribing to the lifestyle, image or message they are providing. Now that marijuana is legal in some areas there are more and more Instagram accounts legally selling marijuana.
Social media glorifies their actions
Not everyone wants to admit that one of the key components of social media is that anyone can go from unknown to virtual star in an instant. Through this method a variety of drug related content has been created. Teens are recording themselves taking drugs and glorifying their experience which influences other teens to take part in using drugs.
It can spread awareness
Social media is also used to spread awareness, messages and generally just information. Content showing teens in action abusing drugs can be found on these social media sites. Instant means of expression is what social media is built on and with all this information at a teen’s disposal, it is easy to be swayed by the many opinions and versions of what exactly a drug is and how it affects them.
With an increasing amount of people using social media everyday it has also become a place to endorse and sell drugs. These accounts are actively promoting the sale of drugs through an easily accessible method. Many teens have been reported to have purchased the substance of their choice online. Online dealers have accounts that glamorize drugs and even the process for buying them.
Social Media and Addiction
With such an influence on not only teens but the general public it’s an important factor in educating others about the real cost of substance abuse and addiction. Inspirations for Youth and Families has created numerous campaigns to reach out to teens and families. We have recently launched a statistics media campaign and also a testimonial quotes experience page. These are shareable pages, photos and content to spread awareness on the effects of substance abuse, mental health issues and the experiences of being an addict.
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