Internet today has become an inseparable part of our lives and irrespective of our age, profession as well as field. We are making use of the internet in some way or the other. Out of all the people who use internet for fulfilling their everyday needs, requirements as well as entertainment purposes, teenagers are often seen to be the biggest contributors to the use of internet. Today parents have least control over the type of content their kids are exposed to on the internet and with the increasing number of teenagers who are finding their way towards internet; it certainly has become a topic of concern as well as fear for their parents. With virtual relationships and friendships given more relevance over the real ones, it is high time that we regulate the extent of internet exposure provided to our children.
Negative & positive effects of internet on teenagers
Addiction is one of the prime reasons why teenagers are discouraged from spending more time on the internet that required. Once a teenager gets addicted to the several social networking websites as well as the adult content present on the internet, it is needless to say that their social and academic skills are going to be largely affected by it. Studies show that children who spend more time on the internet as compared to the time spent with their friends and families become recluse as they grow. Not only this, they also start losing internet in their studies and as a result become a target of social stigma which weighs an individual’s worth and calibre on the basis of the marks obtained by them.
Apart from this, teenagers who are new on the internet often see it as a playground where they have endless things to try and explore. This leads to addiction and them drifting towards exploring different stuff on the internet which involves several chatting websites and content which can leave a deep impression on their young as well as developing minds. For instance, teenagers are seen getting into relationships with people they hardly know on the internet and thus begin the trauma which these young people should not go through at this age, not to forget the impact it has on their academic and social lives.
However, we cannot deny the fact that internet also comes with its set of positives as well. With the huge amount of information present on the internet, teenagers can use it to great extents for academic purposes. It will keep them connected with the outside world which will help them in staying informed about everything that is happening around the world.
Putting it in simple words, we can say that internet is good for teenagers as far as its use is regulated and they are taught about the positives as well as negatives from the beginning. They should be told not to convert it into an addiction. Remember that internet is needful for their academic growth and social development but it is never a necessity.
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Influence Of Internet On Children
Modern children under the age of thirteen are growing up in a world where the internet is in their daily lives. Approximately thirty million children and adolescents go online annually, making them the largest groups of people to rely on it. The internet has grown to be a central part of life utilized in homes, schools, businesses, libraries among others. For children, the use of the internet is in doing schoolwork, communicating, playing video games, watch movies, and listen to music. The heavy reliance on it, consequence in both positive and adverse effects.
The use of the internet by children influences their academic outcomes positively. The internet facilitates access to additional information on the different subjects taught in class. When children spend time reading the wide array of materials, they become better acquainted with their classes, and this improves their performance. Constant reading of documents on the internet also, improves their reading skills, further accentuating their performance. Moreover, the internet enhances children’s creativity as the wealth of information on projects and tutorial materials boosts the skills of doing projects and making presentations. Also, the playing of video games elicits the development of visual skills, teamwork and hand-eye coordination, skills crucial in learning.
The internet has changed the way children communicate. Apart from hanging out with friends, the internet has introduced instant messaging, email, chatting and social media as other avenues of communication. Thus, it has developed the communication skills of children, has aided in fostering of friendships with others, as well as, gaining vital communications skills essential in the job market in the future. Contrary, the alteration of the dynamics of communication by the internet has negatively influenced children. The overreliance on communicating through it has led to children abandoning traditional methods of communication such as face-to-face interactions. Consequently, resulting in strained relationships with friends, families, and difficulties in communicating efficiently in school due to stunting in the development of communication skills.
Internet use by children affects their health. In the current society, more children are spending a lot of their time in front of computers and on their phones. The behavior reduces time spent engaging in physical activities, thereby eliciting a sedentary lifestyle that increases the development of obesity, carpal tunnel and straining the eyes. The over extended use of the internet results in the interruption of sleeping patterns and onset of epilepsy seizures due to flashy images on various web pages. Moreover, increased internet use results in depression and isolation. Children that heavily rely on the utilization of the internet develop feelings of loneliness and depression because of lack of human contact and emotional connections, making them prone to boredom and depression.
Internet use affects children psychologically. The web exposes children to both good and bad information. For one, they access highly violent video games and dangerous programs. Such materials glorify violence through game plots that utilize weaponry such as guns and suicide vests, blood, use of drugs, offensive language, and disturbing pictures. When a child’s mind that has not entirely developed to discern the difference between right or wrong behavior is tainted with such information, it results in aggressive behavior, bullying of others and cynicism about the worst crimes of the world such as robbery, murder, and use of drugs. Moreover, the constant use of hateful messages, lies and insults and presence of pornographic materials erodes their minds leading to addiction to these vices.
The presence of the internet enslaves the current generation of children under the age of thirteen years. It may pose positive consequences such as increased knowledge, creativity, and adoption of the alternate method of communication. Nevertheless, the drawbacks out ways these benefits, thus, necessitating the regulation of its use by children.