OXYTOCIN AND RELATIONSHIPS ONLINE
One research study set out to see just how much people feel others can be trusted online. This study asked participants from several different social media sites how trustworthy they thought people were online. Facebook users showed the highest numbers, with 43 percent of users agreeing that others can be trusted. This is likely related to the release of oxytocin in the brain while on social media, since this hormone elicits feelings of love and trust.
The danger that the rewards system poses, especially when it comes to social media, is addiction. When your brain starts to rely on things such as likes, comments, and shares to activate the dopamine and oxytocin surges in your brain, you might find yourself obsessively checking your notifications or getting irritable when you don’t have access to your social accounts. These are both examples of side effects of social media addiction, and when you experience them, it is a strong sign that you should cut back your usage. So-called social media addiction is another hot-button topic when it comes to psychology. When most people think about addiction, cigarettes and illegal drugs might come to mind. Many people don’t realize that excessively obsessing about or using social media can also constitute addiction. While it is not an official behavioral disorder yet, the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders ( DSM ) lists social media addiction as a “condition for further study.” Psychologists are working to find new ways to
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