People who are too actively use social networks and upload a selfie, at risk to suffer from narcissistic personality disorder, warns an international team of scientists. Text of the publication, however, narcissism is not caused.
Excessive use of the social networks and publish selfies connected with the growth of narcissism, found psychologists at the University of Swansea in the UK and the University of Milan. The study was published in the journal The Open Psychology Journal.
The researchers analyzed changes in personality 74 people 18-34 years, I watched for four months. They also observed how the research participants use social networks, including Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.
For narcissism is characterized by the excessive narcissism and high self-esteem, not corresponding to reality.
Also, narcissists tend to show off and try to use other people to achieve their goals. Although such traits in varying degrees, typical for many people, their excessive intensity can lead to narcissistic personality disorder, when a person begins to devalue almost everything that surrounds it, while idealizing what is associating with himself.
Those study participants who are excessively fond of social networks, showed an increase of narcissistic traits by 25% during the study, the researchers note.
While many of these features have evolved so much that corresponded to diagnostic criteria of narcissistic personality disorder. However, if the participants used mainly the social network, which implies the text of the publication (e.g., Twitter), this effect was not observed.
But for this group mattered is how their narcissistic characteristics were expressed at the beginning of the study — the bigger the party was inclined to narcissism, the more text publications he did.
Social media was used by all participants except one. On average, they used social media for about three hours a day, except to use them for work. Some use social networks up to eight hours a day.
59% used Facebook, 23% Instagram 13% used Twitter, same as Snapchat. More than 2/3 of the participants mainly used social media to publish the images.
“Already there were assumptions about the relationship of narcissism with the use of images in social networks, such as Facebook, but it was not known whether narcissists use social media more than other people or the use of social networks leads to an increase of narcissism, says Professor Phil reed, one of the authors of the study. —
The results of this work show that the publication in social networks can lead to an increase of narcissism.
Considering our sample as representative of the population, than there is no reason to doubt, we can say that about 20% of people may be at risk of developing narcissistic traits, which is associated with excessive use of visual images in social networks. The fact that the participants used visual imagery, suggests that in the future will increase this problem if we do not recognize this form of communication dangerous.”
“The use of photo-centered social networks can strengthen the opinion of narcissistic personalities about the fact that they are the main object of attention. The lack of immediate, direct social condemnation can give them the opportunity to show itself as it pleases and to realize their fantasies of omnipotence” — fears Professor Roberto Trozole.
The researchers also isolated and a number of other dangers in the use of the Internet and social networks.
According to them, the Internet addiction affects up to 18% of the young population. This leads to withdrawal symptoms when the Internet is disconnected, has a negative impact on the friendship, leading to loneliness. Internet-dependent people less and less sleep, less eat right and exercise.
In addition, Internet addicts, there is an increased level of depression and anxiety, worsening memory and attention, reduced immunity.
The study had several limitations — thus, the social time was evaluated by the participants, and the classification of publications according to the researchers, were not sufficiently accurate. In addition, the duration of the study was not large enough.
Scientists say that it will be important to study the effect of specific narcissistic traits on Internet use and behavior in social networks. Meanwhile, they hope that the results of the study can be used to prevent the development of narcissistic personality disorder in young people.