Although today’s teenagers are less likely to get pregnant at a young age, drink alcohol, take drugs or smoke cigarettes, they are increasingly engaging in self-harm, suffering from eating disorders and failing to get enough sleep.
The findings, which come from a government paper has suggested that the pervasion of the Internet and social media plays a huge part in the changes in the behaviour of youngsters in the UK.
Experts have warned that digital immersion has resulted in a rapid and dramatic societal shift which was already having a profound impact on young people. Although many sources claim that the popularity of social media and computer games leaves youngsters with less time to participate in traditional risky behaviours such as underage drinking, it is putting a huge amount of pressure on them to look good in such a selfie obsessed world.
There has also been a clear rise in cyber-bullying as well as the fact that today’s children are now frequently exposed to hate content, self-harm and pro-anorexia websites which is something kids never had to deal with before the Internet was around.
Lucie Russell, the Director of Media and Campaigns at the children’s mental health charity, YoungMinds commented:
“Young people are online 24/7. It never lets up. There’s a constant need for reassurance. They live their lives in a public domain and feel pressurised to present themselves as the perfect person with the perfect body.”
If you think that you or your child could be suffering with an eating disorder or any other mental illness, please feel free to contact Life Works in the strictest of confidence and we will be more than happy to help.