As much as social media has made the world a global village, a section of individuals is engrossed on social media exceedingly. However, companies, politicians, Non-profit organizations, and other people use social media platforms to convey messages to their target audiences. A section of social media users has managed to amass huge followings on the platforms and therefore earning through them by monetizing their activities. This is through promoting and advertising company products and several market brands. The desire to be influential on social media and commercialization of brands has been on the rise in the recent past. This has resulted in a few millennials feeling pressurized, thus seeking to imitate the lifestyles of celebrities and other online influencers. Since millennials come from all walks of life, they end up living fake lifestyles by posing in posh places in photos, attending high-end events to get affiliated to a certain social class. They end up spending a lot of time on the platforms without realizing they are getting addicted. Approximately 10% of Americans are social media addicts, according to psychologists.
What Extent Is Regarded as Addiction?
As an Individual, if you are greatly concerned about what is happening in various social media platforms or you have a compulsive urge to log onto them, thus spending a lot of time on them, you are considered to be an addict. Social media addiction can be significantly attributed to the provision of ‘feel-good‘ chemicals such as Dopamine and Serotonin. Social media platforms such as Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram, Twitter, and Snapchat release a similar nervous speedway that recreational drugs and betting give to users.Research studies have shown that the brain centers that are triggered by drugs like Cocaine are responsible for the compelling urge for social media addiction. Social media use has also resulted in poor decision making, whereas social media addicts portray behavioral signs, thoughts, and attitudes similar to drug-addicted individuals. When you post something on social media, and you get appealing responses, the brain releases dopamine a ‘feel-good’ chemical thereby perpetuating a habitual social media behavior.
Using Social Media Networks as a Coping Technique
Some individuals use social media to receive the recognition which they are not accorded in life. Other people use social media to deal with inner battles such as loneliness, depression, and stress. The frequent use finally causes problems like scorning work, school, poor physical health, and irritability, and mood changes. This makes you turn to use of social networks to relieve themselves, thus increasing dependency.
How to Detect Social Media Addiction
Using various social media platforms has become a norm for everyone, and therefore it’s advisable to be cautious not to fall into the cycle of addiction. As an individual, you are therefore encouraged to practice digital detoxification, which comprises a period of spending time away from electronics such as smartphones and laptops. This involves enacting easy steps such as deactivating one or more social networks, logging onto them once or twice every couple of hours, leaving your gadget on in a different room when going to sleep, and self-discipline by not holding your device during mealtime.These self-made rules and regulations enable you to be focused on physical relations, thereby reduction of dependency on social networks. Social media addicts portray nervousness and anxiousness after being away from social media platforms. You may also isolate yourself from your peers and family and a loss of enthusiasm in hobbies you once treasured.
8 Tell-tale Signs of Addiction:
1. Lying on the Duration Spent on Social Networks
The majority of social media addicts tend to feel guilt and shame as you spend a lot of time on social platforms. To cover this up, you opt to lie to your peers and family on time spent on networks since you can’t moderate your behavior as much as you are aware of its wrong.
2. Isolation from Peers and Family
Gradually, social media addiction increasingly consumes your time as an individual. Due to this, you may isolate and withdraw from your loved ones and participate actively in social platforms.
3. Loss Of Enthusiasm In Activities You once Loved
As social media participation progresses, as an addict, you increase your duration spent on social networks. This overindulgence takes up the time that you pursue other interests and hobbies you once loved.
4. Scorning Work and School to Spend Time on Social Networks
Since social media addicts over indulge on social networks actively, you may tend to abscond duties like work and school assignments. This is because you are unable to moderate your time and energy and prioritize other important key areas.
5. Feeling Stressed and Finding Life Meaningless
As an addict, at a certain point, you may feel as if life is meaningless due to boredom. Take into consideration that whatever you see on the social networks by the influencers and celebrities is barely a third of their lives. Also, they mostly highlight spectacular events in their lives, and they also have tight schedules of social networks. Most importantly, keep in mind that you have to work to maintain your lifestyle as well as learn and step out to experience the beauty of life.
6. Interruption of Talks to Log Onto Social Networks
As an addict, you are compelled by social platforms to the extent that you become restless and have difficulty concentrating during conversations with friends and family. Many a time, you may seem distracted and frequently check your smartphone for updates and notifications.
7. Anxiousness, Irritability and Mood Changes
Due to the inability to control your feelings, as an addict, you tend to feel anxious when you can’t regularly check your devices for updates and notifications. As much as you feel guilt afterward, you still do that over and over again.
8. Interferences in Professional and Personal Activities
As an addict, if you are schooling, you may experience poor grades, and missing out deadlines may be shown in the workplace.If you experience the specified signs, it is advisable to consult mental health services to be assessed and get individualized treatment.
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As much as anyone can suffer from food addiction, genes play a significant role in an individual’s likelihood of addiction. Factors such as ethnicity and gender also increase food addiction risks. Environmental factors like peer pressure, lack of parental guidance, and economic status also increase addiction likelihood. Just like any addiction type, food addiction can be mitigated and treated. To increase the chances of full recovery and reduce relapse after some years, a twelve-step program and abstinence from the addictive foods should be considered by medical experts. Since addicts react differently, even upon using similar foods, medical experts use personalized treatment plans for each person. As an addict, consult your medical service provider for help as soon as possible and start the recovery process.