Student Mental Health Impacted by Social Media


Graphic by Onnika Moore

With almost every student in the GHS building active on some sort of social media platform, many problems have been found involving the mental illnesses aspect that those apps play on students. Studies have indicated that approximately one in five teens between the ages of 12 and 18 suffer from at least one diagnosable mental health disorder.
Social media, most of the time, feeds students’ stress. With stress in high school, students start lacking social skills, school work and having the motivation to come to school.
“Social media is addictive,” counselor Mrs. Melissa Ryan said. “If a student doesn’t have a plan or structure in place, social media time can end up dominating their time. Because social media can lead to social isolation, students’ social anxiety can be very triggered by social media.”
Plenty of students and teachers agree that TikTok and Instagram are the biggest social media platforms that cause mental health issues. According to an article written in 2022, approximately 67% of high school students on TikTok and 76% on Instagram, many teens are affected greatly by these apps.
“I feel like TikTok is the worst,” senior Abby Turpen said. “You see everyone else’s lives and you think, ‘’oh, why are they so happy, why are they always with friends, why are they…?’ You just beat yourself up about it.”
It was estimated by Health Guide that about 10 percent of teens report being bullied on social media and many other users are subjected to offensive comments. Social media platforms such as Twitter can be hotspots for spreading hurtful rumors, lies and abuse that can leave lasting emotional scars.
“Mental health is affected by the choice of words people say to others,” sophomore Sabrina Andrews said. “Words hurt as much as actions.”