TAKING ACTION: What Parents Need To Know About the Selfie Obsession

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HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WHNT) --  The “selfie.” Those self-portraits taken on your phones are more popular than ever. Their popularity is greatest among teens and young adults.

But Mike Andrews with the NOVA Center in Huntsville warns what can be fun can turn into obsession over looks.

"What can be just good fun can quickly turn into a selfie addiction," Andrews says.

He tells parents to watch your child’s mood.

“When it has to do with your self-esteem and you get so self-absorbed, that's when it's worrisome with these 13-year-olds, 14-years-olds, teenagers, college kids.”

Mental health experts worry self-esteem often becomes measured in 'likes'.

Say your child gets 20 likes on one photo she or he posts to Facebook.  Andrews said that may be good for this time, but if the next photo gets just five likes, your child could think something is wrong.


People do need to be cautious.

“When they put something out there. It’s always going to be out there. You can never get it back and people need to realize that," said Andrews.

Because while a selfie is just meant to capture a moment in time, on the Internet, the selfie lives forever.

If you would like to talk with someone about your teen's selfie use and get some help contact the NOVA Center.


  • ariel

    if people are that insecure that likes on a picture matter that much, i think there is a much deeper problem. people these days are disgusting.

  • Dane Parker

    Vanitas vanitatum. People have always been obsessed with themselves. There is nothing new under the sun.

  • Ginger

    Ariel, some kids/teens/young adults are looking for acceptance. In today’s society, it’s not much different than from when I was a kid. We wanted to look like the models in the magazines and the people on music videos. We did our makeup, hairstyles and wore the clothes of those who were popular because we wanted to not only fit in but to have others accept us based on the things we thought was important. As you grow older, you usually grow out of that. But at this age, it is imperative that kids know they should not make their self worth dependent upon what others think of them. You will never make everyone happy. Even the most popular we see on TV has haters and get teased.

  • brandon norwood

    the ones that people think are special are the ones that have no morals or self respect. you have to love yourself and be you while respecting others regardless of how other people are. you will probably get less likes if you do not follow new pop culture trends but be glad your different. selfies do not pay bills nor does it get you through life. im done babling now :)

  • Bubba

    Brandon is the voice of reason, as is Arial and Dane. Bubba can’t add anything to those comments. Thanks!

  • willis

    Several reason’s a person take’s a picture of them self Anew outfit, no one around to take the picture,, along with other reason’s, Now when it come’s to doing the duck faces and all that it appears to be needing attention. What would they call someone who took pictures of food daily. I guess hungry hun.

  • ariel

    people have ALWAYS taken pictures of themselves, this is nothing new just sounds like theyre thinking way too much into it. its honestly not that deep if you or your child cant handle it, take the camera away.

  • SB

    What an idiotic article. I still have to hear on the news that some 13 years old killed himself (or herself) because they didn’t get many “likes” on a social platform.
    All I hear from this article is someone trying to justify they job by writing a worthless article.

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