Stay Away From Tik Tok!

By Larena Tannert

All social media platforms are addictive, but none are quite as bad as Tik Tok. The wildly popular app holds over a billion monthly active users globally. 

To begin, Tik Tok offers a variety of dangerous, and even life threatening challenges that pose a massive risk to the app’s one billion users. For example, the blackout challenge is a task where participants attempt to force themselves to faint by holding their breath and constricting the muscles in their chest. This challenge, among many similar ones, has led to multiple deaths and injuries, including brain damage. Other challenges involve messing with fire, consuming dangerous toxins, or making rash decisions that may seem harmless and funny, yet could result in death. Although many people participate in these challenges for the “views” and popularity, they don’t think of what the outcome could be. Blinded by their addiction to the app, millions of users are engaging in these challenges and facing violent repercussions. 

In addition, due to its addictive nature, many teens are staying up late, pointlessly scrolling through Tik Toks, rather than getting the sleep needed to properly function, grow, and learn. Each short video the app provides creates a release of dopamine in users’ brains, making them feel good, but also making them unable to turn it off. Tik Tok’s most prominent audience, teenagers, are in a crucial developmental stage in their life. Teens should be getting 8-10 hours of sleep per night, but many are getting significantly less than that because of Tik Tok. Even worse, the videos are providing people with a false sense of reality, and giving rise to a variety of mental health problems. The unrealistic standards that Tik Tok sets, such as the perfect body,  the perfect relationship, and the ideal life, have led users to feel left out and even depressed. Users can develop an addiction to getting the “perfect life,” unaware that the life they dream of is non-existent. Even worse, some people use Tik Tok as a means to bully kids they don’t like, or say mean things that could easily destroy someone’s self image. Cyberbullying is a major problem throughout all social media, and Tik Tok is just another platform it can thrive on. 

Overall, Tik Tok is a dangerously addictive app that continues to harm children, teens and adults every single day, by encouraging violent challenges and addictive content that doesn’t just keep users up at night, it threatens to cause them serious mental health problems and issues with their development.