This article discusses the recent spike in plastic surgery and the surveys which point to social media as the culprit for this trend. Now, in addition to the red carpet and magazines, people are constantly bombarded with pictures of friends; and there is an increased movement of social media to be the central place for “seeing and being seen.”
A study from Berlin found that scanning friend’s Facebook pages and photos can trigger feelings of envy and even loneliness. An additional study by the TODAY show surveyed 7,000 Americans to find that 42% of moms suffer from “Pintress stress” where they worry they are not as creative as other moms and this can lead to late night hours looking for things such as inspiring birthday themes for parties.
The American Academy of Facial and Reconstructive Surgery’s annual poll reported that “social media activity may be driving an uptick in plastic surgery requests.” Surgeons are seeing a 31% increase in plastic surgery requests as a result of how people want to present themselves on social media.
The article also states that in the social world we live in, people must expect that they are ‘Googled’ or ‘Facebooked’ before meeting someone personally or professionally. Especially with a community increase in online dating, potential dates are generally screened by their looks before getting a chance to know someone’s personality.
In addition to the article in Time Magazine, there was recent press around Emma Watson blaming social media for ‘shortening’ childhood. She claimed that young girls are more prone to worry about their looks and no longer have a time of innocence where young girls are not concerned with their looks.
I would like to pose the following questions:
- Do you think social media can cause lower self-esteem? Do you think social media could have led to an increase in plastic surgery requests?
- Do you agree with Emma Watson in her opinion that social media causes young girls to lose their innocence and the blissful period in life of not worrying so much about their looks? Most of us are a few years too old to have experienced the uproar of social media at such a young age (elementary school to high school). Think about younger family members that may have grown up with social media; do you think they view themselves differently than you viewed yourself when you were their age?