Body Image: A Broken Mirror Made By Social Media
Updated: Oct 29, 2020
By Samantha Simmons
Image via fix.com
In 2018, more than 95 percent of teens had access to a cellular device, such as a mobile phone, according to the Pew Research Center of Internet and Technology. Forty-five percent of those young teens had access to social media. Clearly, in the year 2020, that numerical statistic of minors on technological devices has further increased and will continue to rise as the years go by.
As younger generations come-of-age in a more technologically-reliant society, more young children have the access to social media platforms. This, in turn, has an impact on how teens and children see themselves when they take a look in the mirror.
It is no secret that there has always been an impossible standard of beauty that people of any gender must adhere to in order to be perceived as worthy to those around them. Though the standard of beauty for everyone is slowly becoming more inclusive, there are almost double the number of platforms broadcasting what women are “supposed” to be as compared to early on in the development of media.
Platforms like Instagram, a popular social media base that allows users to post pictures and videos of themselves, feature highly edited models without a speck of imperfection. People often look at the images on the app and wonder why they don't look the same as the models in the picture.
In my opinion, social media can clearly correlate to body dysmorphia, alongside the growing amount of young children plagued with eating disorders in 2020. Over 50% of teenage girls and 33% of teenage boys are using restrictive measures to lose weight at any given time, according to the Charity, Eating Disorder Hope. Even small weight restrictive acts lead to eventual eating disorders similar to Anorexia, Bulimia or Binge Eating.
Clearly, social media lends a hand in the destruction of body image for all who access the internet on a consistent basis. Until we begin to take down walls in the face of beauty standards in the internet world, minors will continue to normalize the idea that having the perfect body is the only way to present one's self.
Written by writer Samantha Simmons