This teen health doctor explains how teens are processing the first TikTok war and other news online

Dr. Hina Talib is a board-certified pediatrician and adolescent medicine specialist, writer, and teen media creative based in New York City. Recently, she was featured in an episode of our teen mental health podcast, On Our Minds with Matt and Faiza to give young people advice on having a healthier relationship with news media consumption with Special Mental Health Correspondent Deesha Panchal.

Media can give us anxiety, it can also give us hope 

While some of the news media we consume can feel tragic, Dr. Talib starts the conversation with a reminder that media has plenty of joy to offer as well. She says, “Media can be overwhelming. It can be consuming. It can cause our heart rates to rise. It can make us feel anxious. Media also does many wonderful things like educating us, making us feel connected to each other, giving us hope, making us feel like we see ourselves in communities where we may not in person, but we can online. And so it is, you know, a two-sided coin.”

Engage with news media, don’t just consume it

Dr. Talib’s first suggestion for consuming media in a healthier way is to use media to engage with others and think critically. She suggests we watch media or consume media “with somebody or talk about it with somebody, [and] share it with somebody. And [ask] what did you think about this?…what do you think of their perspective about this?”

In times of crisis, focus on what you can control

With dark-humored TikTok videos trending about the war in Ukraine and activists on social media posting on the climate crisis, Dr. Talib reminds young people:

“There are things that we can control, and then there are things that we cannot control. And always think in your head…what are the things that I can control?”

Deesha and Dr. Talib also talk about simple tips to consume media in a healthier and more intentional way.

Listen to On Our Minds wherever you find your podcasts, or click here.