Television is the second most popularly used media after mobile phones. It has been around for ages and so has its negative consequences. It is important to realize that these consequences are becoming more dangerous and should be taken seriously. An average teenager spends 20 hours watching television which is more than half of the day (Teen Health, n.d., para.3). While this alone is a concerning issue, other problems like eating disorders, drug addictions, communication problems, unrealistic ideas etc. all are the major problems that needs to be investigated. Television today, is one of the most important sources for entertainment as well as education. However, apart from the positive points, most of the television shows and advertisements today are popularly criticized for its negative influence on teenagers. This essay will therefore discuss how television has a negative effect of teenagers in their daily life and will include some possible solution to overcome these problems.
Television shows have been around for decades and hence have a strong influence on a teenage mind. It sets norms and beauty standards which hence leads to one of the growing concerns in todays society, eating disorder. Many teenagers feel like they need to look the certain way to get attention from opposite gender or fit in the society. (Gregory & Kimberley,1999, p.1) in their recent study conducted on body images on television concluded that most of the actors and actresses are chosen based on the body type and age, that is young women are casted more than the aged women. These studies only prove that television is trying to set a norm for body types and thus increasing insecurities among the youth. The eating disorder does not affects the healthy or fat people but also creates insecurities among the really skinny people. One of the most recent body trends is having an hour glass figure. In order to acquire this figure women are wearing waist trainers which heavily effects their body and can caused very seviour danger such as damaging the organs.
Its not a surprising fact tat television shows can fuel violence among its viewers. In fact, most of the violence among the young generation comes from television shows. Most of the famous television shows have major violence in them such as the very famous Games of Thrones. Exposure to such shows can lead to aggressive behavior, bullying, sleeping problems, nightmares, and depression (Victor,2009,3). Most of the school shootings that happened are caused by young teenage boys that are addicted to violent shows and games. Not only this but the rap industry is also using violent language to attract young viewers. These are some of the many evidences that if not stopped can be a major threat since some of the violent behavior is already starting to become visible to the psychiatrists.
Television apart from causing eating disorder and increasing violence is heavily influencing the drug use. Drug scenes are more common than you may think. Many shows like breaking bad and weeds revolve explicitly around drugs. (Drug Influence, n.d., 8). Many teenagers watch these shows and get eager to know what is it like to do weeds. It may not sound as harmful but in the long run it will have a major impact on the person. Shows that portray the use of drugs and show the harmful effect still impacts the viewer since in the end they do normalize the drug use. cigarettes use Is more common than you many think. Infact, now people are using e-cigarettes such as Jull in order to smoke at non smoking areas.
Watching two seasons of a show in one day is not very new to the gen Z, but they do not think about the harms and consequence of it. Excessive use of television and other media can not only result in physical problems, but it is also proven that people who spend their time on such devices can lack communication skills. (Sunory,2014, p.C7) . Slowly people are starting to love their lives in screens and not in the actual world. this change is very much visible through the app called Netflix which allows the viewers to watch shows and movies without advertisements. And there are statistics available that most the viewers finish a season in a day. This only proves how much time people spend watching shows and not living in the reality. Some people even go as further as dressing up like their favorite character and living a fictional life like them.
However not everything is bad about these television shows. There are some advantages such as having educationals shows that provides us with general knowledge and some shows even connects us to other cultures. Some on these shows infact help people in their related fields.