A TikTok Guide for the Parents of Teens

TikTok's a very popular application for teenagers. Do you know why and how to use it? Today, we'll offer a TikTok guide for parents of teens.
A TikTok Guide for the Parents of Teens

Last update: 26 February, 2021

You may already know what the TikTok app is because it’s very likely that your teenagers use it frequently. But, if you don’t know much about it or how it works, we want to offer you this TikTok guide. We’ll tell you what you need to know about this application and why it’s so popular.

The short and catchy videos you can create on the app are extremely successful among the teen crowd. So, getting to know more about TikTok is a great way to connect with as well as protect your teens in this social media-saturated world.

TikTok guide for parents

Who can use the app?

Anyone over the age of 13 can download the app for free. Parents can use the parental control settings on iOS or Android to block or limit the downloading of specific apps from the phone if they’re concerned about use before the age of 13.

So, how can parents make sure their kids safely set boundaries with the app no matter what their age? Making sure teens use apps safely isn’t entirely possible, but it’s certainly something we should strive for.

Teens are in a difficult phase of life where they have great access to adult ideas, but no experience to have any wisdom about how to manage that information. Our job as parents is to give them space to gain experience while keeping lines of communication open so they know where to go for real information.

A TikTok Guide for the Parents of Teens

A good question to ask yourself is, “Is my teen overtired; does my child have access to their phone all night?” Part of the wisdom parents can share with teens is to talk about moderation. Making a TikTok video in math class isn’t only rude, it’s a poor use of their time.

Making a TikTok video during a break or while waiting for the bus, or hanging out at the lunch table is a fun way for teens to be together. Using an app on your phone in the middle of the night isn’t a good way to make sure you’re rested for school, but it’s understandable to play with your phone after your to-do list is done.

TikTok is popular with teens because of how short the videos are. They’re quick, so they don’t drag on too long and they keep the viewer’s attention. It’s also popular because many of the people we’re watching are similar in age, so it’s great to see someone we can really relate to.

However, there can be a dark side for some who use the app. It can make some teens feel self-conscious. They may feel they’re less attractive than those in the videos and get into a dangerous habit of self-comparison.

A quick TikTok guide: How to use it

Using the app is relatively straightforward and works largely like other social networks:

  • Prepare the video: Before they start recording, users have the option to choose from a variety of settings and options, such as speed, filter, etc.
  • Record the video.
  • Make final edits and add a caption to the video. Special effects, music, sounds, etc. can also be included.
  • Publish the video.
    A TikTok Guide for the Parents of Teens

Users also have the option to duet with others and even participate in challenges. To duet, both users must follow each other and can then create a split-screen or exchange videos together. As with other platforms, challenges will occasionally appear on TikTok, prompting users to try to make videos that become trending topics.

How can parents get involved?

A great way to open the lines of communication about TikTok is to start on common ground. At the heart of making TikToks are some roots that would be very similar for many parents. TikToks are like the “dance routines” and “home videos” that many moms and some dads remember doing with their friends for hours on end at that age.

The same collaboration, time, and creativity all go into these similar actions. The difference is that their version is faster, set to different music, and streamed over the internet. Getting in on the fun of TikTok is even better and will help you open a line of communication with your child about what kind of content they’re consuming and creating.

Share with your child about your own history of making up dance routines with friends. You can ask them if they do things like you did on TikTok. Then, ask them if they’ve made any videos they’d like to show you or if they’d like to make some with you.


This text is provided for informational purposes only and does not replace consultation with a professional. If in doubt, consult your specialist.