According to Dr. Larry Rosen, a professor of psychology at California State University Dominguez Hills, whose research focuses on children and technology has claimed that Facebook which is the most efficient way of reconnecting with people can be harmful and can bring psychological disorders to teenagers. A recent study conducted by Larry Rosen illuminates that overdosing on Facebook can lead to a psychological disorder in teens.
At the 119th Annual Convention of the American Psychological Association, Rosen in his presentation titled “Poke Me: How Social Networks Can Both Help and Harm Our Kids” presented his findings based on a number of computer-based surveys distributed to 1,000 urban adolescents, and his 15-minute observations of 300 teens in the act of studying.
Following are the points listed by Rosen which can bring harmful effects for teenagers by using Facebook:
- Development of narcissism in teens who often use Facebook
- Teens who have a strong Facebook presence can lead to other psychological disorders, including antisocial behaviors, mania, and aggressive tendencies
- Heavy users of Facebook and video games may increase their absence from school and the likelihood of developing stomach aches, sleeping problems, anxiety, and depression which could lead them to need counseling services to help them get better.
- Students in middle school, high school, and college who checked their Facebook at least once during a 15-minute study period have Lower grades
- The average teen sends 2000 texts per month, which can lead to problems communicating with family and even carpal tunnel syndrome in a few cases
However, all the findings are not harmful and negative, there are some interesting findings by Rosen too, and one of the most interesting points from Rosen’s research was the development of “virtual empathy.”
Rosen said for positive influencing of teens’ moods, they are developing the ability to show virtual empathy for distressed Facebook friends and that empathy is actually well received by friends.
He also put advice for concerned parents who might want to keep track of their kids’ online interactions:
“If you feel that you have to use some sort of computer program to surreptitiously monitor your child’s social networking, you are wasting your time. Your child will find a workaround in a matter of minutes.”
According to Rosen, a parent’s key is to keeping kids’ screen time safe and healthy, which reflects doing more than just lecturing, Rosen advises parents:
“The ratio of parent listen to parent talk should be at least five-to-one. Talk one minute and listen for five.”