LA CROSSE, Wis. (WEAU)-- According to the Department of Health and Human Services, more than 80% of teens are active on social media, a percentage that only continues to grow.
But it can be challenging for parents to keep up with their teens, as social media is ever changing.
“In the last 5-10 years, that’s how we see people really communicate. That's how they interact with each other that's really their social outlet,” says Mayo Clinic Health System Counselor Karen Wagner.
Wagner is part of a social media safety informational session meant to educate parents who have questions.
“We will go over some of the most popular social media websites for young people today. As well as what are some of the risks for some of those platforms and then some tips for parents about how to keep their child safe, how to have some piece of mind with their teenagers being online,” says Wagner.
Jake Erickson, Executive Director of the La Crosse Boys & Girls Club applauds the idea of the listening sessions.
“Understand the sites your kids are on and have open conversations with them about what’s appropriate and what’s not appropriate and also make them feel comfortable in approaching you when there are situations that are happening via social, as parents were in the dark a lot of the times, it’s basically were not asking the right questions,” says Erickson.
Pediatricians, therapists, and specialists from all over La Crosse will be holding a special series of these meetings to answer any questions that parents and teens may have.
The additional free sessions will be held through November, covering different topics and tips for parents of teenagers.
“I really just found thru my practice that a lot of parents are just baffled themselves how to sort of manage this and how to keep their child safe... To provide that education, to provide those tips to parents to help them get that conversation going with their child,” says Wagner.
UPCOMING SESSIONS: GUNDERSEN HEALTH SYSTEM
RAISING CONFIDENT KIDS:
Tuesday, September 26
AVOIDING SELF INJURY:
Wednesday, October 11
Wednesday, November 8