Validation from the reactions of others to items users share is a big part of why people enjoy social media.

us when it’s time to go to sleep. The portion of the brain that is activated when we surf social media is called the “reward center.” The circuits in the reward center of our brain communicate with one another using dopamine. In other words, when something good happens to us, such as getting a like on social media, dopamine levels in our brains increase, which is what elicits those happy emotions that you might have experienced when interacting on social media. When something undesirable happens, like someone posting a negative comment on one of your posts, dopamine levels decrease, which has the opposite effect. Another chemical that makes social media so enticing is oxytocin. Also known as “the cuddle chemical,” oxytocin is often released when we kiss or hug a loved one. How does this relate to social media? Recent studies show that when we interact online via social media, oxytocin levels can rise up to 13 percent. With that spike in levels, we experience feelings of love and trust and also feel less stressed.



Made with FlippingBook Digital Publishing Software