Educators should be aware of the mental health challenges that more and more of our young students are dealing with.
There is a growing body of evidence indicating that the smartphone and similar devices, and the social media use that they support, are having bad effects on our kids, who have become pretty much dependent on them over the last decade.
While rates of depression and other indicators of mental health have been worsening for both boys and girls, there appears to a much sharper impact on females. This can be expected, as the different sexes mature in different ways. As boys grow, if they feel aggression or anger they tend to deal with it in a physical way. Their use of devices often tends towards gaming and web browsing. But girls tend to express their aggression in a social way, and these ever-present digital tools lend themselves to that.
Additionally, all of those Instagram pics and Snapchat stories, etc., create increased pressure to be cheerful, pretty, fun, and cool. Unless you are a young girl or young woman right now, it is probably pretty challenging to have a good sense of what this must be like for today’s teenaged girls.
There is no shortage of information available about this issue. Just google it. The following excerpt is from the article “Does Social Media Cause Depression” from the Child Mind Institute:
“A 2017 study of over half a million eighth through 12th graders found that the number exhibiting high levels of depressive symptoms increased by 33 percent between 2010 and 2015. In the same period, the suicide rate for girls in that age group increased by 65 percent.
Smartphones were introduced in 2007, and by 2015 fully 92 percent of teens and young adults owned a smartphone. The rise in depressive symptoms correlates with smartphone adoption during that period, even when

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