Sexting increases sexual activity among adolescents and is associated with an increased risk of depression and anxiety.

It is not the first time we have talked about this practice, which consists of sending messages, photos or videos of personal erotic and sexual content via mobile through instant messaging, such as WhatsApp, or social networks. It is known by the name of 'sexting' and refers to the acronym of 'sex' or sex and 'texting' or writing messages.

We have also commented on their increase among minors and the dangers they face due to their desire to get likes. Because although in principle it is a private shipment between two people, it can fall into the hands of third parties.

Also now, researchers from the University of Calgary have analyzed more than twenty studies related to this practice and have found a correlation between sexting and increasing sexual activity among young people. According to this research, adolescents who sex have 2.16 possibilities more than the rest of not using any contraceptive method and 1.79 mYou are more likely to suffer from diseases such as anxiety and depression.

Dangers associated with sexting

This meta-analysis, published in the journal JAMA Pedriatics, has found an association between sexual habits, such as the lack of contraceptive use (more than 2.16% chance) or the amount of sexual activity practiced, but also other dangerous practices. Teenagers who practice sexting have:

  • 1.79% more likely to suffer from mental disorders such as anxiety or depression.

  • 3.78 more possibilities of drinking alcohol.

  • 3.48 times more risk of using drugs.

  • 2.66 more options to be smokers.

  • 2.5 more likely to go through delinquent behavior.

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Emotional disappointment, in sexting for harmless purposes

It is another of the conclusions of this study that insists on affirming that the correlation does not indicate causality, that is, that whoever practices sexting does not necessarily have to incur risk practices.

According macroanalysis, which includes 23 studies with 42,000 minors, Younger adolescents may be more susceptible to the risks associated with sexting due to their relative immaturity, compared to older adolescents.

They are not aware that it is possible that these contents uploaded to the Internet, end up in unwanted hands due to technical failures, hackers, carelessness, extortion, harassment, blackmail, Trojans ...

The psychologist Sheri Madigan, author of the study and assistant professor of psychology at the University of Calgary (Canada), had already participated in another study on sexting, published in Jama Pediatrics. Already then I talked about this inappropriate use. Concluded 1 in 7 children under 18 (15%) has sent a message of this type and 1 in 4 (27%), has received it.

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But for her the data should not surprise. What is more worrying is that "almost twice as many teenagers say they have shared sexual content that didn't belong to them":

"Between 12 and 13 percent of young people report that they have forwarded a message with sexual content to another person without the consent of the sender. They send messages of images or videos explicitly sexual from other people without consent."

The author warns that adolescents do not realize that the photos they share could end up in the hands of third parties, that they could use them to threaten or blackmail them.

Although we already knew it, this study reinforces the idea that we have to know what our children see and do on the Internet, to protect them from those dangers that they don't even know exist.

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Video: Why Should School Cybersafety Policies Cover Sexting? (March 2020).