TikTok is Destroying your Attention Span

TikTok is Destroying your Attention Span

TikTok is a social media app for everybody; it has 15-second to 10minute videos. Although these videos are short, they cause damage including becoming addictive, creating  mental health issues and shortening attention spans of the viewers. 

TikTok is very addictive. A study conducted at the University of Trinidad and Tobago used the Facebook addiction scale to measure TikTok’s addictive nature. The Facebook addiction scale measures the six core elements of addiction: salience, mood modification, tolerance, withdrawal, conflict, and relapse. The Facebook addiction scale classified 68% of Tiktok as “no risk,” 25.4% of Tiktok was classified as “low risk,” and 6.4% classified it as “at-risk.” TikTok has one billion users, meaning 6.4 million people could be addicted.  Although TikTok age requirement is 13 years old, kids are lying daily about their age to get on the app. According to various sources including wallroomedia.com, 34% of users are 10-19 years old, spending 95 minutes, or an hour and a half a day on the app.  Plus, this doesn’t even take into account when parents with TikTok accounts give phones to their children without knowing what harm the app could do.

Tik Tok can also negatively affect the mental health of users. In fact, according to LA Times, “State attorneys general have launched a nationwide investigation into TikTok and its possible harmful effects on young users’ mental health, widening government scrutiny of the wildly popular video platform.” Those fighting to restrict TikTok state that the app causes mental heath issues for those viewing the app. Viewers often compare themselves to filtered individuals on the app. Filters are used to create high check bones, smooth skin, and more. This comparison leaves many users to feel inadequate and can lead to mental health issues like depression and anxiety.  

Watching TikTok for an extended period lowers your attention span.  According to an article in The Independent, those who use the app for over 90 minutes can narrow their collective attention span over time. It has gotten so bad that TikTok has implemented alerts that notify as user when they have been scrolling for too long. The message states, “stop; you’ve been scrolling for way too long now.”

Plus, TikTok also has an extremely dangerous influence on teens. One example is the “devious lick” trend, where students would film themselves destroying or harming property in late 2021. This trend caused thousands of dollars of damages for school districts.   This trend was followed by other disturbing trends including the door kick challenge, the rubbing under the tongue trend and fake tongue piercings all of which have consequences.  

TikTok is negative; it damages your mental health and is risky and harmful. Society has been dealing with the unnecessary consequences of TikTok for too long, it is time to stop scrolling.