How to Teach Teenagers Health Literacy in the Age of Online Influencers
How Teenagers Interact With Online Media
How Social Media Affects Body Image
The Influence of Online Health and Wellness Content
Holding Social Media Influencers Accountable for Health Content
- In September 2019, Instagram introduced a new policy that would ban ads promoting weight loss products and cosmetic procedures to users under the age of 18.
- The Register of Health & Wellness Influencers was founded in June 2019. This was done to proactively manage growing concerns on the conduct and content produced by health and wellness influencers.
- Multiple health brands are launching initiatives to better inform and train influencers to talk about their products before signing promotion deals for branded content.
- Health professionals are building audiences online to share information about health issues related to teenagers, including mental health and the risks of vaping. “Health literacy has to be addressed in partnership with the audience that you’re trying to target,” Lanning said.
Teaching Teenagers About Health Literacy and Media Literacy
How to Have Conversations About Social Media Influencers and Body Image With Teenagers
- Discourage associating physical appearance and weight as the sole measurement of health, which can contribute to body image issues and miss the nuance of how an individual’s health is affected by a number of factors.
- Find ways to enter a teenager’s world, watch online content, and engage in their interests.
- While it’s impossible to follow every social media influencer, engaging in social media and acknowledging popular content can help guide conversations.
- Ask questions about the content your teenagers are watching rather than immediately passing judgment.
- Instead of telling them directly to not do something, try asking “Have you heard about this trend? What do you think about it?”
- Let the teenager take the lead in conversations and listen to their ideas.
- By putting them in the driver’s seat, you empower your teenager and encourage them to become an advocate for health issues that affect them.