Scientists Link ‪Selfies‬ To Narcissism, ‪Addiction‬ & Mental Illness

According to experts, the obsession of taking selfies is associated with mental health conditions based on a people’s obsession with their look.

Dr. David Veal, a psychiatrist, explains: “Two out of three of all the patients who come to see me with Body Dysmorphic Disorder since the rise of camera phones have a compulsion to repeatedly take and post selfies on social media sites.”


“Cognitive behavioral therapy is used to help a patient to recognize the reasons for his or her compulsive behavior and then to learn how to moderate it,” he said for the Sunday Mirror.

Could one possibly imagine that taking selfies may cause mental illness, addiction, narcissism and even suidice? Most psychologists say yes, and parents are warned to pay more attention to their kids and check what they are doing online just to avoid anything similar to what happened to Bowman.

The world was in terrible shock when the case about Bowman’s attempt to commit a suicide was all over the news. The British teenager tried to end his life after he failed to take the “perfect selfie.”

His obsession went that far that he was trying to capture the best shot and spent 10 hours every day in taking up to 200 selfies. This severely affected both his life and health. The 19-year-old boy lost 30 pounds and dropped out of school.

What is even worse, he did not leave the house for six months and let the obsession destroy his entire life. He was taking about 10 pictures right after he woke up. When he failed to take the image he desired, the young boy tried to take his life, ended up overdosed, by fortunately, his mother saved him.

“I was constantly in search of taking the perfect selfie and when I realized I couldn’t, I wanted to die. I lost my friends, my education, my health and almost my life,” he said for The Mirror.

Danny is considered to be the first selfie addict in the UK. He received a therapy to handle his technology addiction, and OCD and Body Dysmoprhic Disorder, too.

He received the therapy at the Maudsley Hospital in London, and he was supposed not to touch his iPhone for intervals of 10 minutes. Further in the therapy, these 10 minutes turned into half an hour, and eventually an hour.

“It was excruciating to begin with but I knew I had to do it if I wanted to go on living,” Danny told the Sunday Mirror.

Public health officials in the UK confirmed that addiction associated with social media, including Facebook and Twitter, is actually an illness and about 100 patients seek for treatment every year.

“Selfies frequently trigger perceptions of self-indulgence or attention-seeking social dependence that raises the damned-if-you-do and damned-if-you-don’t spectre of either narcissism or very low self-esteem,” explained Pamela Rutledge in Psychology Today.

The problem about this digital narcissism is in its effect on people’s character. It applies a huge pressure on an individual, pressuring them to reach an unfeasible goal, without making them hungrier. Teenagers want to be like their favorite super-popular models and singers, which is hard enough already.

The best advice experts give to individuals is to lower their aspirations if they are not eager to work hard to achieve something they expect and desire.

Only few things are considered as more self-destructive than the combination of high entitlement and lazy work ethic. Online manifestations of narcissism are sort of self-presentation strategy that is supposed to help individuals in compensating for the low and fragile self-esteem.

The reinforcement of such efforts and the rewarding by others perpetuate the distortion of reality and even consolidate narcissistic delusions.

Carefully go through the infographic below for more details, provided by The Best Computer Science Schools.


READ Scientists Link Selfies To Narcissism, Addiction & Mental Illness

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