What should parents do about the use of social networks in adolescence?

The use of social networks in adolescence is something increasingly common. Many people who are now parents or guardians have likely had contact with a social network during adolescence or early adulthood. However, it is important to know how to accompany and guide children in the virtual environment.

The possibility of being able to communicate virtually with family and friends is interesting and, in an ideal world, it would only bring advantages. However, we know that this is not the case. If not properly cared for, social media can harm and even harm children and teens.

Set a minimum age to use

The first thing to do when it comes to using social media in your teens is to talk to your kids and set a minimum age for them to have access to these tools. It is important for the family to analyze the possible advantages and disadvantages that can be derived from this.

The main social networks, such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Snapchat, adopt the minimum age of 13 as a prerequisite to create an account. WhatsApp establishes a minimum of 16 years for its users. However, many people do not respect or know these rules.

Therefore, when your child asks to have a profile, assess whether he has the maturity and responsibility to be in that environment. After all, prioritizing your physical and emotional security, you will have to deal with unpredictable, atypical, and possibly irritating situations.

Combine healthy use rules

If you have decided that your child is ready to be on social media, accept the rules and limits for healthy use. It is also important to establish a maximum time in the week or a defined period in the day, especially for the youngest or beginners in the networks.

In this way, you can better protect yourself from the traps and malicious people present in the virtual world. This also sets a precedent for you to correct your child in case of an unexpected situation.

Some rules can be applied and help in this process:

  1. Loss of access when you do not comply with the agreement;
  2. define that there are no secrets between you and him when he uses networks;
  3. require that you use the computer in a visible place;
  4. restrict inappropriate websites;
  5. set specific times or maximum usage time;
  6. define times when the use of social networks is prohibited.

It is also important to be aware of behaviors that report excessive use of the Internet, such as skipping meals to connect to the Internet, abandoning other activities, moving away from social life, gaining weight for no reason, decreasing performance and school grades, etc. ..

Monitor accessed content

As much as you trust your son, keep an eye on the content she publishes and consumes on social networks. One suggestion is to be present on the same networks as him and demand that they be “friends”. Remember that he is equally susceptible to what his colleagues and other family members share.

Determine when use is prohibited

Explain to your child that using teen social media should not interfere with other activities of the day. In the same way that you have time to study or bathe, it is important to establish a time interval for the Internet. Some options to prohibit the use are meals, family outings and before bed.

Increase awareness of the dangers of the Internet.

Whenever necessary, inform your child about the dangers to which he may be exposed on social media.

Now that you know what to do to protect your child on social media, how about sharing this article? That way, other people can benefit from the content!

We are cyberschool, an online school that provides secure content for your teens.

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