Okay so this one has officially terrified us: the brave, intrepid, and intelligent folks over at asapSCIENCE have done it again. It's no secret that social media and technological advances have had a huge effect on our society and the world at large. But did you know that it's also changing us on a biological level? And not necessarily in the best ways?
It's true and here's the video proof to terrify you into never wanting to tweet an embarrassing #TBT selfie ever again (or will it?).
1. It's As Addictive As Drugs To Our Brains
Though it's mostly a psychological issue, it's still a fascinating one: 5 - 10 percent of Internet and social media users are physical unable to control how much time they spend online. Why? Because the Internet is as addictive as drugs, and alter the brain in identical ways to drug use in the parts of our brain that control emotional processing, attention spans, and decision-making. Um, scary much?
2. Your Brain Cannot Block Out Distractions and Interferences
Forget the old adage that says social media users are better multi-taskers. Turns out frequent social media use actually makes people worse at it, unable to filter out distractions and white noise compared to those who use it less, making it harder to commit things to memory.
3. It's Re-Wiring Our Nervous Systems
This might be the scariest of all. In the study, the participants' brains essentially reacted to stimuli as a physical phenomenon, like an itch.
4. ...And Rewarding Us For Selfish Behavior
While using social media increases the amount of dopamine released into the body, with 80 percent of social media use directly related to the person using social media our bodies are now essentially rewarding us for talking about ourselves, making narcissism feel like the norm to our bodies. Gross.
5.But It's Not All Bad ...At Least When It Comes To Love
People who meet on the Internet first are generally more likely to like each other more — aww, isn't that nice?
You can watch the whole video here, if you're into the terrifying reality that is the biological repercussions of our onactions: