5 Top Social Issues Facing Teens Today

5 Problems For Teenagers Today

  • Bullying
  • Gun Violence
  • Mental Health
  • Drugs and Alcohol
  • Obesity

This is a volatile time, and there are a number of social issues facing teens today that other generations didn't deal with. Advances in technology and the rise of social media have contributed to a change in the ways in which our young people interact with each other, learn and receiving information. This isn't necessarily a bad thing, but it is different. It only makes sense that we'd start to see different problems among our kids. Let's take a look, in no particular order, at what the main concerns of adolescent are these days.

1. Bullying

Kids have always been known to tease. It can be a defense mechanism in order to feel a part of the crowd. Modern times have allowed the spread of bullying to expand beyond what it used to in the past. Kids can now reach each other through online sources and through texting. They can share evidence of the bullying amongst their peers. Therefore, this is an issue that should continue to receive attention and awareness.

2. Gun Violence

Gun violence in schools and other public places where adolescents congregate seem to have increased in recent years. This has sparked great political controversy among our citizens and government leaders. The teens themselves, as seen with the Parkland, Florida shooting, are becoming more involved in trying to lessen gun violence among them. This is definitely an issue that merits advocacy in order to save lives.

3. Mental Health

Mental health is definitely one of the top social issues facing teens today, according to the Zur Institute. Kids have a lot of pressure on them to succeed. There is a greater awareness of mental illness and related conditions. With this awareness and understanding comes the responsibility of society to pay attention and to work to alleviate the issue accordingly. Depression, anxiety and other related disorders affect kids' school performance, their social interactions and overall wellbeing.

4. Drugs and Alcohol

Underage drinking and use of illegal drugs remains a problem for teens today. Peer pressure may be even higher these days due to the ways in which kids can so easily interact online. Though teenagers may not see the risks in such use, the danger is real. Impaired decision making happens when under the influence of illicit substances, which can lead to accidents or to other costly mistakes. In addition, overdose is possible. As is addiction.

5. Obesity

Kids are more sedentary these days with the increased use of social media and video games. In addition, processed foods and other "junk" foods are being consumed at high levels. This is a bad combination when it comes to physical health. Kids are at a higher risk of becoming obese today. Obesity is linked to other health dangers such as diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease and certain cancers.

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These are just five of the biggest problems kids are facing today. Our government, schools and parents must pay particular attention to them in order to help youth navigate the hazards. These social issues facing teens today aren't new, but they are pervasive and must be taken seriously.