Teenagers who spend hours on social networking sites are more likely to display narcissistic tendencies
Too much social networking could lead to behavioural problems and narcissism in teenagers, according to Larry D Rosen, professor of psychology at California State University.
Professor Rosen presented the research at the 19th Annual Convention of the American Psychological Association. In a talk entitled ‘Poke Me: How Social Networks Can Both Help and Harm Our Kids’, he explained the potential psychological risks for teenagers.
‘While nobody can deny Facebook has altered the landscape of social interaction, particularly among young people, we are just now starting to see solid psychological research demonstrating both the positives and negatives,’ he says.
Professor Rosen explained that teenagers overusing social media could make them more prone to vain, aggressive and anti social behaviour. They may also be more likely to experience anxiety, depression and other psychological disorders.
The study also found that social networking impacts on academic performance. Teenagers who checked social networks at least once during a 15-minute study period achieved lower grades.
But Professor Rosen’s study did not disregard the positive aspects of social networking. Networking sites can help encourage shy young adults to socialise and help teenagers to empathise with each other.