I wrote this essay about social media to show how yes, social media is a good thing to have around, but can also have very negative effects. Social media seems like a wonderful way to stay in contact with friends and family and even keep tabs on celebrities. Social media is continually impacting individuals' lives, especially impactful youth. Social media always has advertisements on their apps and websites that impressionable youth are able to see. Advertisements plastered on all the websites are designed to catch the eyes of the viewers and they almost always do. Social media seems to constantly post and advertise a standard of beauty that young girls believe that they have to meet to be accepted. It becomes hard for young girls to differentiate between what is real and fake, what is true, and what is photoshopped. Social media continues to push out a standard, saying we need to be this thin, we need these clothes, these shoes, and that there is only one way to be beautiful. Exposing young women to this will eventually begin to influence them to look like what is advertised to them, which in turn can cause women, and even men to develop eating disorders. Eating disorders are just as much of a physical craving as an emotional. Some individuals argue that they cannot stand the feeling of having food in their stomach and that they get a sense of pleasure in having none; however, to reach that point of a physical need, those individuals have to be under enough emotional stress. Almost all eating disorders begin emotionally, and a lot of it stems from body image and seeing how society thinks we should look to be healthy and beautiful. Young women get exposed to this through their social media and see these advertisements and celebrities as a way to base their life and body image off of. Social media is not a complete cause, but a factor in effecting the development of an eating disorder, and can really impact someone who is already struggling with a negative body image. Advertisements and celebrities are not the only impacts to cause the development of negative body image, so can the lives of other teens and young adults. Social media platforms such as Facebook, Tumbler, Instagram, and Snapchat are continually streaming pictures and videos of individuals having fun and living the best life. When young women and teenagers view this and see that they are not out there having fun either, can help stem into the growth of further body image issues, which in turn has the ability to encourage eating disorders and mental illnesses such as depression. Continually drowning oneself in social media will constantly affect an individual's sense of body image, and in most cases bring it down and cause the sickness to boil up inside the individual until it becomes a way into self-harm. Social media and society's output of a standard of beauty impacts young women constantly and helps to propel the development of eating disorders. The way individuals and celebrities continually post and upload all the fun and amazing things they do in their lives everyday cause young individuals to become depressed and turn to eating disorders and self-harm to find a form of control. Social media continues to impact the youth and how they view themselves and others.
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