If there is one thing common in our city and, as a matter of fact, the entire USA, is that every parent wants their kid to be happy, healthy and successful.
Not trying to be super technical, but would like to mention that there is a chemical in our brain known as Dopamine, which is released when we do activities that give us happiness.
Our kids get their natural Dopamine when they play outdoors with their friends, go hiking, spend quality time with family, learn new things, achieve academic success in school, etc.
On the other hand, the same chemical, Dopamine, gets released in extremely high amounts when kids get instant gratification on social media sites like TikTok, Facebook, Snapchat, Instagram, YouTube, Pinterest, Spotify, Twitter, Discord, etc., where their whole focus of happiness is to get more “likes.”
Whenever kids get a “like,” they feel happy; when they don’t or get a negative comment, they feel anxious and sad. They will keep on checking if they got more likes or not. Very quickly, kids get entangled in this vicious virtual world where their happiness depends upon social media accolades only.
Kids have a developing brain that gets enhanced and enriched when they learn and experience real-life situations, and spending time on social media does the opposite.
Kids are losing the art of speaking well and being able to express themselves verbally. Their world is focused on virtual instant gratification, and we need to stop this!
I presented this information at the William S. Hart Union High School District board meeting on Feb. 1 and urged the board members to put on the agenda to discuss this critical topic not only to make policies so that the use of social media can be significantly reduced, but also to educate kids about this.
I also want to emphasize that it is not only the responsibility of the school district, and teachers and parents should be working together on this crucial issue so that our children’s future and our country’s future remain bright.
Dr. Aakash Ahuja