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Impulsive Facebook Use May Cause Brain Imbalance

In case of Facebook addiction, read on.

IANS

Updated:March 21, 2017, 8:39 AM IST
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Impulsive Facebook Use May Cause Brain Imbalance
Representative Image (©GERARD JULIEN / AFP)
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Do you have the habit of constantly checking Facebook or other social media sites while driving, in a work meeting, or at other times? Beware, it could lead to a deficiency in the balance between two systems in the brain, researchers warn.

The findings showed that when there is an imbalance between two cognitive-behavioural systems in the human brain, there is a higher rate of problematic use of social networking sites.

In the study, researchers from the DePaul University in the US applied the dual system perspective -- an established theory in cognitive psychology and neuroscience -- which holds that humans have two different mechanisms in their brain that influence their decision-making.

While System 1 is automatic and reactive, quickly triggered, often subconsciously, in reaction to stimulus such as a sight of or notifications from social media, System 2 is a reflective, reasoning system that moves more slowly, regulates cognitions and controls behaviours, according to Hamed Qahri-Saremi, assistant professor at DePaul University.

The second system can help individuals control impulses and behaviours that are not in their best interest, he added.

For the study, detailed in the Journal of Management Information Systems, the team obtained responses from 341 undergraduate college students from a North American university who use Facebook.

The results showed that individuals who displayed higher levels of problematic use of Facebook had a strong cognitive-emotional preoccupation (system 1) and a weak cognitive-behavioural control (system 2), creating an imbalance.

In fact, the greater the imbalance between the two systems, the more likely individuals were to engage in problematic social media use behaviours, the researchers said.

In addition, this problematic use of Facebook also negatively affected the students' academic performance. The higher the problematic use, the lower was the GPA score.

"A slight increase in problematic social media use translates into significant grade loss, and this declined performance is persistent," added Ofir Turel from California State University.
(Get detailed and live results of each and every seat in the Lok Sabha elections and state Assembly elections in Andhra Pradesh, Odisha, Arunachal Pradesh and Sikkim to know which candidate/party is leading or trailing and to know who has won and who has lost and by what margin. Our one-of-its-kind Election Analytics Centre lets you don a psephologist’s hat and turn into an election expert. Know interesting facts and trivia about the elections and see our informative graphics. Elections = News18)
| Edited by: Shifa Khan
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