TikTok has a new addiction recovery community on its platform. Within the popular app, users reject content that encourages drug use or behavioral disorders. Instead, YouTubers post materials that address substance abuse, behavioral addiction, and stigma. Through social media, they question the world’s views on what it means to be an addict in recovery.
How it all started
At the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, TikTok became one of the most popular apps in the world. The video-sharing service’s eye-catching 7- to 60-second clips became the light in those gloomy moments. People stuck at home immersed themselves in tons of short stories for entertainment. Over the weeks, various niche genres such as bread-baking, thrift, and education gained in importance. One of these niches became today’s recovery community.
Much like Instagram once did, TikTok has given space to a group of people who rise above addiction. Content creators maintain an area where it’s okay to fight, laugh, and share the “ugly”. Many of them share posts showing their recovery from alcohol abuse and overcoming obstacles. Others battling concurrent disruptions post countless videos of recovery benchmarks and relapses.
The social network is no longer just an app for dancing children and young people. Adults, both old and young, are destigmatizing society’s views on addiction through the viral platform. With hashtags like #soberlution, #wedorecover, and #recoveringaddict, the narrative changes. Every day, individuals shed light on the real experiences of users who are recovering.
TikTok may offer a space for the recovery community to use their voice, but the app isn’t perfect. According to the Guardian, harmful pro-anorexia content was easily searchable on the platform. Another Sun investigation found hundreds of videos glorifying drug use. Based on the same study, users were also taught in posts how to take substances such as cocaine or magic mushrooms.
In response to these studies, TikTok launched an investigation in 2020. Since then, they have taken steps to prevent malicious content and advertisements from being posted. Despite all efforts, the poisonous messages continue to seep through. There are thousands of videos flying under the network’s algorithm. Marked as “underground” trends, these videos range from live videos of influencers sharing their experiences during a “trip” to challenges like the Benadryl Challenge, which encourages users to take large doses of the antihistamine to induce hallucinations.
TikTok, the recovery community and the future
Illegal videos may be circulating on the TikTok platform. Still, it has a fair share of positive recovery-related messages too. The social network is a sea of information that can cause both harm and benefit. While TikTok continues to improve its algorithm and prohibit drug use content, it is up to TikToker to decide which videos to consume.
Find Treatment For Substance Abuse Today
If you or someone you love is struggling with an addiction, help is available. Contact a dedicated treatment provider for treatment options. The group of committed personalities can help you with all questions about rehab. You don’t have to fight substance abuse alone. Take a step towards recovery by contacting a treatment provider today.