Effects of social media and what does that mean for guitar?

For your child learning to play guitar, especially when they get to teenage years. This is make or break for many of them. This is because there are so many distractions for children.


There are a lot of talks about millennials and Z generations children and what they have to go through growing up in such a technological world. 


One thing that I want to focus on today is the effect of games and technology, including social media.


A lot of teenagers and adults require a form of escape from stress. Music, whether it’s listening to music or playing music has for a long time been a great stress reliever that is healthy, productive for one to use.


Behavior around technology for kids

Now, this behavior is changing towards the use of technology to accomplishing a very similar thing. Why is this?


When children play games or receive a text on their phone, they get a rush of dopamine, that’s the same drug that comes with drinking alcohol, smoking, gambling. It’s addictive. Which is why many children end up being attached to their phones and iPads.


Dopamine in itself is not harmful in small quantities. You receive the same drug when enjoying your favorite meal. And this is the same as when you listen to music too. It also provides a numbing effect and can work as an escape. Which is why music works great as a stress reducer.

The trouble comes with how much dopamine there is.


Children do not fully develop their self control portion of their brain until they are 25 years old. What happens when high level of dopamine levels that gaming, social media and technology enters your child’s brain?


The use of these social media and games overruns the neural pathways connecting the reward circuit to the prefrontal cortex, which is what helps people to tame impulses. And that’s contributes to why the more your child plays on a game, or use their phones. The harder it is for them to get off their phones or iPads. Their brains are simply not able to filter such a large quantity of stimulus in the brain.


Teenage years is a very stressful time for children, and therefore the more they associate the feeling of instant “happiness” from social media or games. The more likely they are to turn to those things to reduce their stress. This creates the “addictive” cycle to technology.


Tech companies have openly said that the way their games, apps and social media is built. It’s designed to give dopamine “hits” when one receives a like or a comment.


What does this mean for your child?


Because of their association with technology and that’s what they’ve used as a method of escape throughout childhood and into their teenage years. This is what they will end up doing through their adulthood as well.


Technology has some amazing benefits, and there are positives that come up gaming.


However, high use of social media has been associated with increased likelihood of depression.


How does guitar help? 


If you can help your child enjoy playing guitar and they can use guitar as a form of stress release. Guitar and music is much healthier for a child. It has immediate benefits of improving their social skills when they play with other people; improve their fine motor skills; listening skills; processing and orientation of attention in time. Far transfer skills including reading comprehension, verbal memory, general IQ.


Hope this article helps you to understand that balance and moderation is important for the use of technology. And having your child be able to play an instrument is a great way to channel that stress is a healthy way that also has lots of other benefits for them.


About author:

Guitar Tuition East London is an acoustic and electric guitar school based in London. Who doesn’t just focus on the lessons themselves but really cares about the psychological effects of learning music for the students. Helping them improve their guitar playing in a way that has compound benefits to the rest of their lives.