The combination of social anxiety and the need for social assurance by feeling part of a group increases the risk for excessive and uncontrolled use of Facebook, a study reveals.
The excessive use of social media can in turn negatively affect school performance, work, and one’s health and well-being, the study said.
The researchers found that both social anxiety and the need for social assurance were positive predictors of problematic Facebook use.
“But the link between social anxiety and excessive use of Facebook was only significant for users who had medium- to high-levels of need for social assurance — defined as a strong desire to seek companionship and interact with others,” said lead researcher Roselyn Lee-Won from the Ohio State University-Columbus.
The authors said that the combined social connections capability and messaging features of Facebook may offer an appealing social media environment for users with social anxiety.
“Problematic Facebook use seems to result from multi-factorial causes and personality attributes,” said clinical psychologist Brenda K. Wiederhold, editor-in-chief of the journal Cyberpsychology, Behaviour, and Social Networking. (AGENCIES)