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New Guidelines Issued for Kids’ Social Media Use

The American Psychological Association (APA) has recently released guidelines for healthy social media use among children and teenagers, acknowledging the concerns regarding the negative impact these platforms can have on their emotional and mental well-being.

In an interview with NBC News Correspondent Savannah Sellers, Ana Cabrera delves into the significance of these recommendations.

The guidelines emphasize the importance of parental monitoring of online activities for kids aged 10 to 14.

It suggests actively screening for problematic usage and discouraging the use of apps that solely focus on beauty and appearance.

With mounting evidence highlighting the detrimental effects of social media on young, developing minds, the APA aims to address this issue and offer practical solutions for families.

The interview discusses the relevance and feasibility of implementing these guidelines for parents.

Sellers mentions the abundance of negative headlines surrounding social media’s adverse effects and the challenge of distilling that information into actionable advice.

One key aspect highlighted is the “comparison trap” that children often fall into while using social media.

The constant exposure to idealized images and unrealistic beauty standards can have a profound impact on their self-esteem.

Additionally, the guidelines suggest avoiding spaces where cyberbullying and hate speech are prevalent.

This not only protects children from potential harm but also promotes a healthier online environment.

Sellers emphasizes that the guidelines act as conversation starters between parents and children, enabling discussions about these issues and how to navigate them effectively.

Another notable aspect is the consideration of screen time’s impact on sleep and physical activity.

The guidelines recommend setting rules, such as removing phones from the bedroom at night, to promote better sleep hygiene and encourage physical exercise.

In terms of the responsibility of tech companies, Sellers raises the question of what measures they can take to assist families in fostering healthier social media experiences.

The interview highlights the need for companies to address their algorithms and assess whether features like the “like” button contribute to unhealthy comparisons among children and teenagers.

The APA’s new guidelines provide a framework for parents to navigate the complex landscape of social media and protect their children’s well-being.

By actively monitoring online activities, initiating conversations, and advocating for changes within the tech industry, families can strive for a healthier and more positive online environment for their children.

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