The UK government has instructed medical experts to draw up official guidelines for social media use amid fears over its impact on child mental health.
The guidelines for social media will focus on safe lime limits after the manner of regulations guiding recommended maximum alcohol consumption for adults. The directive was given by the health secretary Matt Hancock to UK’s Chief medical officer, Dame Sally Davies.
In a statement made to the Observer, Mr Hancock said he was ‘very worried’ as a father of three children by the growing evidence of the detrimental effect on the health of young people.
He told the paper: ‘Unrestricted use (of social media) by younger children risks being very damaging to their mental health. So I have asked the chief medical officer to bring forward formal guidance on its use by children.’
He added: ‘As a parent you want to be able to say, ‘the rules say you shouldn’t use social media for more than a certain period of time.’
‘This is why we have a chief medical officer: to set a norm in society, make judgments on behalf of society, so that individual schools or individual parents don’t have to decide.’