Need a perfect paper? Place your first order and save 5% with this code:   SAVE5NOW

Literature Review – The Impacts of Media Consumption on Adolescent Self-Esteem

A literature review is an extensive and comprehensive summary of preceding pieces of research on the same topic of study. A literature review is significant because it forms the basis for research and acknowledgment of different works and theories when building research on a particular topic. This assignment will critically examine and evaluate literature based on the impacts of media consumption on adolescent self-esteem.

A study conducted by Valkenburg et al. (2021) on social media use and adolescents’ self-esteem focused on two major aspects of self-esteem: self-esteem level and instability. The research further elaborated that self-esteem level refers to whether social media use in adolescents makes their self-esteem low or high. The study used 15 correlational studies investigating whether adolescents spending more time on social media platforms have lower or higher self-esteem than adolescents spending less time on social media platforms (Valkenburg et al., 2021). The study critically investigated how adolescents spend much of their time on social media self-esteem fluctuates. Self-esteem instability is ” the extent to which self-esteem fluctuates within persons (Valkenburg et al., 2021).” The study postulated that adolescents who spend much time on social media tend to have low self-esteem. However, one of the study’s limitations was that its results showed that the effects of social media use were unique for every adolescent, showing that their results could have been more consistent (Valkenburg et al., 2021). It implies that the majority of their participants never experienced noticeable negative effects of social media use on their self-esteem.

A study conducted by Steinsbekk et al. (2021) shows that many adolescents are exposed to negative things from the internet that affect their self-esteem. The research further explains that adolescents are exposed to cyberbullying and photographs with idealized self-presentation (Steinsbekk et al., 2021). It implies that adolescents using social media platforms are exposed to this threat that may affect their appearance and self-esteem. The study shows that most of the adolescents that post their photographs on social media platforms receive different reactions from their peers in the social media platforms. For example, most youths who actively post updates when they receive positive feedback on their appearance have their self-esteem enhanced or boosted by the appearance confirmation from their peers (Steinsbekk et al., 2021).

On the other hand, the youths that receive negative feedback on their appearance have low self-esteem. According to Steinsbekk et al. 2021, approximately 94% of teens in first-world countries use social media platforms such as Snapchat, Facebook, and Instagram and frequently post their lifestyles and photographs. The article’s author argued that many reviewed research always shows mixed results, with some showing a positive relationship between self-esteem and social media use and others showing negative associations between social media use and self-esteem, with others not showing any significant relationship (Steinsbekk et al., 2021). The study hypothesized that adolescents’ engagement with their peers on social media photographs and updates often depicts ideal self-presentation.

Daniels (2020) conducted a research study on The Impact of Social Media on the Self-Esteem of Youth -10-17 Years Old and argued that the creation of social media platforms changed how youths interact and connect with each other. According to Daniels (2020), adolescence is a crucial time during youth life as it is the process of self-esteem and adolescent development. Daniels (2020) further elaborated that adolescents’ self-esteem is delicate and affected by any form of feedback received from social media platforms during adolescence. This article shows that technology keeps changing, affecting how people communicate and interact with others in the digital world. The author postulates that cyberbullying victims experience lower self-esteem when compared to the people bullying them. Adolescents are the number one victims of cyberbullying because they are always excited to post their photographs, and when they encounter negative comments their self-esteem goes down, affecting their mental health negatively. Low self-esteem triggers anxiety and depression among adolescents who frequently use social media sites. Daniels (2020) further elaborated that there should be implementation of interventions to help young people who are addicted to social media platforms that affect their lives negatively. Parents and guardians should be at the forefront of helping adolescents mitigate the risks associated with using social media platforms.

Another study conducted by Gallagher (2017) narrowed down the influence of social media on teens’ self-esteem. Gallagher (2017) argues that teenagers in the recent world always stay glued to their personal computers, phones, and tablets, scrolling through different posts on social media platforms. Gallagher (2017) further elaborates that technological advancements have increased the risks of adolescents getting addicted to media consumption. The author of this article elaborates that media consumption leads to negative body images and dissatisfaction. Many adolescents are greatly affected by other people’s opinions about their body image (Gallagher, 2017). Most adolescents are compelled by media consumption to compare themselves with others they think have ideal body images and appearance. Adolescents get exposed to social media, where they interact with sexualized content from fashion magazines and advertisements from famous media personalities and start comparing themselves with these people. It affects their self-esteem when they compare themselves with these celebrities, with others developing eating disorders due to dieting.

A study conducted by Perkovich (2021) on the impact of social media on teenage females’ self-esteem found that social media is a way of communicating and connecting with others in every part of the world. Social media platforms are the only areas where teenagers interact with their peers, initiate relationships and even plan for social gatherings. According to the American Psychological Association, “self-esteem is the degree to which the qualities and characteristics contained in one’s self-concept are perceived to be positive (Perkovich, 2021).” This study shows that many mental health conditions are linked to low self-esteem. Teenage girls are more exposed to social media pressures in pursuit of acquiring an ideal body image. Teenage girls are more obsessed with body image issues than boys (Perkovich, 2021). With the current trends, every girl wants a nice and attractive body like their peers and what they see on the internet. This affects them negatively and reduces their self-esteem and self-confidence.


Daniels, J. M. (2020). The Impact of Social Media on the Self-Esteem of Youth 10–17 Years Old: A Review of the Literature.

Gallagher, S. M. (2017). The influence of social media on teens’ self-esteem. Rowan University.

Perkovich, A. C. (2021). The impact of social media on teenage females’ self-esteem.

Steinsbekk, S., Wichstrøm, L., Stenseng, F., Nesi, J., Hygen, B. W., & Skalická, V. (2021). The impact of social media use on appearance self-esteem from childhood to adolescence–A 3-wave community study. Computers in Human Behavior114, 106528.

Valkenburg, P., Beyens, I., Pouwels, J. L., van Driel, I. I., & Keijsers, L. (2021). Social media use and adolescents’ self-esteem: Heading for a person-specific media effects paradigm. Journal of Communication71(1), 56-78.


Don't have time to write this essay on your own?
Use our essay writing service and save your time. We guarantee high quality, on-time delivery and 100% confidentiality. All our papers are written from scratch according to your instructions and are plagiarism free.
Place an order

Cite This Work

To export a reference to this article please select a referencing style below:

Copy to clipboard
Copy to clipboard
Copy to clipboard
Copy to clipboard
Copy to clipboard
Copy to clipboard
Copy to clipboard
Copy to clipboard
Need a plagiarism free essay written by an educator?
Order it today

Popular Essay Topics