Experts Agree – There Is a Very Real Link Between Social Media and Eating Disorders
Unfortunately, the media and eating disorders go hand in hand. Most medical experts concur that we are dealing with an eating disorder epidemic that is sweeping the planet, and much of it is closely intertwined with the explosion in popularity of social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.
It’s important to understand the relationship that social media and eating disorders share, and it is of the utmost importance to take advantage of any and all solutions that allow you to minimize and mitigate the damage that social media may have on yourself, your self-image, or those that you care about most.
The Internet Has Transformed Our Lives in Ways We Could Never Have Expected
10 years or so ago the overwhelming majority of people had never even heard of social media, let alone created an account on any of the platforms available back then.
Today nothing could be further from the truth.
With close to 1 billion people all over the world logging on Facebook on a daily basis, and with hundreds of millions of people all over the planet using Instagram, Twitter, and other social media platforms routinely, the world is as connected today as it’s ever been in the past – and things aren’t slowing down anytime soon.
This connectivity has helped shrink the corners of our globe dramatically, opening up a lot of new opportunities that simply never could have existed previously.
At the same time though, not all of the changes the Internet has ushered in have been beneficial – especially when it comes to the close link between social media and eating disorders.
Online Bullying, Unrealistic Expectations, and a Very Visual And “Like” Focused Planet Are Conspiring Together to Create More Eating Disorders Than Most Expected
Look, we simply cannot ignore the fact that social media platforms like Instagram and Facebook (two of the most visual social media platforms out there) give everyone the opportunity to share their pictures with the world – but the anonymity that many people enjoy and the social “armor” that they are protected by when they speak through a computer and not face to face can create some pretty toxic situations.
Online bullying has led to a huge spike in teen suicide rates, as have unrealistic expectations from the photo shopping of their favorite celebrities to untenable body shapes, and let’s not forget about the addiction that people have to “getting likes” on the visual content that they post to all of these platforms.
Those that were already a little bit self-conscious about their body have open themselves up to a tremendous amount of negativity on social media, and many of them may develop eating disorders because of this harsh treatment.
Social media isn’t going away anytime soon (fact, many would agree that it is completely rewriting the “rules” of online communication), and we need to find ways to address the link between social media and eating disorders because of it.
Hopefully one day soon we’ll be able to live in a world less superficial and less judging, but until then it falls on our shoulders to make sure that our own little corner of the Internet is as friendly as possible.