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EFFECTS OF ADDICTION TO SOCIAL MEDIA

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EFFECTS OF ADDICTION TO SOCIAL MEDIA
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Effects of Addiction to Social Media
Addiction is a behavior that compels people to practice certain activities repeatedly that they become harmful habits and interfere with vital activities of life. The truth is that Social Medias such as television, electronic games, the internet and social networks are addictive as some people attain their basic physiological need from interacting with them. They develop a compulsion to use social media in excess resulting to a wide range of negative impacts (Jones, Fox, 2009). There is a common thing between Social Media’s addiction and substances addiction, they are both self-medicating to the users. Children are more susceptible to this addiction than adults; children are still in the age of social development that involve more of learning through interaction, unlike adults. The learning process of children interferes with when they engage in electronic games instead of learning from people around them.
Some people are addicted to watching television, and they turn to television when distressed for solace, except when they watch their favorite programs for pleasure. The temporary emotional liberation they get while watching only last for a while, they end up frustrated even more since the major cause of their problem still exist. The case is very similar to substance user; they take drugs when under stress instead of confronting their problem. Similar to television addicts, the substance users end up feeling even worse afterward.

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Children are even most affected since they imitate all the characters in the programs. The children tend to learn from the characters they see on television, and most of it is fantasy, and they tend to make wrong judgement since they are not interacting with the people on one on one basis. This retard their social development (Jones, Fox, 2009).
Electronic games cause addiction to both adults and children. The similarity between electronic games and substance addiction is that one has to pay to access them. Many adults often feel overwhelmed by their numerous responsibilities. In a bid to unwind their mind from real life, they engage in playing video games excessively and become engrossed in the fantasy that they evade responsibilities (Lenhart, 2008). Also, those addicted may be focused on attaining the highest score and forget basic hygiene. The addiction effects to the child are even more detrimental. The character and the behavior of the child are affected by the games involves violence and graphic sex which degrade their morals. The child may take what’s on the game as the gospel truth. Many of them who are addict develop poor social skills which least matters in computer games. The academic of the child is also affect as much of the time is robbed by electronic games. Some children steal money so that they can play games since they are not making any earning (Wellman et al., 2001).
The aspects of the internet allowing its users to socialize, meet and exchange idea through a chat room and also blogging and commenting on people’s blog may lead to addiction. Some of the internet users will tend to develop emotional attachment on-line activities and friends. Other internet users might even spend countless hours researching on the different topic of interest. Similar to supplementary addictions, those addicted to internet use the simulated fantasy world to connect with people who are real through the internet to substitute the real-life connection that is not achievable normally. Those addicted to internet increase amount of time to maximize on satisfaction. The people involved are always anticipating for the next session online. Jeopardy of relationships, educational or job opportunities which, are very important just because of internet use. Some people evade responsibilities through use of the internet as a tool to keep them from thinking about their key role (Shah, Najin, Lance, 2001). The most affected on the issue of internet addiction are the children; the parents are sometimes too busy on the internet, and they don’t attend their needs both emotional and physical. The children unlike the adults, lack self-control and end up spending too much of their time on the internet whereas they should be concentrating on their studies. Internet addiction positions threat to physical health, many children have become obese as technology has advanced since they are not leaving their rooms, which prolong inactivity (Wellman et al., 2001).
Conclusively, the use of social network especially Facebook, Twitter and others may lead to addiction as some people tend to spend too much time communicating leading to harmful habits. The similarity between the addiction based on social network and the addiction of substances or experiences is that it involves a lot of people who prompt each other to intensify compulsion to addictions. The social networking addicts checks Facebook status update constantly and checks people’s profile for many hours. Some spend three hours checking news headlines. The most susceptible are the children; they attain lower grades due to misuse of time on Facebook and development of antisocial behavior, mania, and aggressive tendencies. They even become more susceptible to future health problems. Comparing them with adults, the children have less control over the effects of social network since they are still learning.

References
Jones, S., & Fox, S. (2009). Generations online in 2009 (pp. 1-9). Washington, DC: Pew Internet & American Life Project.
Lenhart, A., Kahne, J., Middaugh, E., Macgill, A. R., Evans, C., & Vitak, J. (2008). Teens, video games, and civics: teens’ gaming experiences are diverse and include significant social interaction and civic engagement. Pew Internet & American Life Project.
V. Shah, Nojin Kwak, R. Lance Holbert, D. (2001). “Connecting” and” disconnecting” with civic life: Patterns of Internet use and the production of social capital. Political Communication, 18(2), 141-162.
Wellman, B., Haase, A. Q., Witte, J., & Hampton, K. (2001). Does the Internet increase, decrease, or supplement social capital? Social networks, participation, and community commitment. American behavioral scientist, 45(3), 436-455.

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