Psychologist Dr Martin Johnson touches on the subject of Facebook addiction disorder, symptoms and what can be done.

An addiction is to perform an activity repetitively and to avoid or ignore other aspects of life.  Such aspects may be challenging or painful and the addict takes comfort in doing the activity repeatedly.

Facebook addiction is no different.  The addict spends a major of their awake time mingling around Facebook activities.  This pattern or behavior excludes other things that need to be done or the exclusion of tasks that are once enjoyable, for examples, a hobby or chore or relating to friends and family in a personal face-to-face manner.  The addict’s life is centered around Facebook.

Normally, the addict is not aware of his current situation and will always deny the fact.  Brushing it aside as if it is trivial and can easily be stopped.  On certain cases, it seems to succeed in breaking the pattern, but he will be back again after a short period of time.

These are definitely signs of addiction and a problem that needs attention.  Fortunately, Facebook addiction is not as serious problem compared to other online addictions, for instance, online gambling.  In fact, it can be viewed as a proactive activity in socializing.  Social media is not a bad term.  It is just another form of communication tool that is used by a different generation.

The youngsters are using social media in an equivalent way as their parents and grand-parents when there are no computers.  And telephones were the mainstream source of conversing or interacting then.  For many, it is a convenient way to get in touch as the Facebook platform allows for storage of messages in the form of text, images, videos and audios.  The richness in the tools for expressing one’s thought is unimaginable just a couple decade ago.

One may think that interaction via the digital way is superficial, but the reality is Facebook is not a replacement tool but an augment to what is already available, for instance, mobile phones and emails.

So just like any other addiction, when it becomes a compulsive activity and the addict no longer enjoys it but just can’t stop doing it, it is best to seek medical attention immediately.  There are Facebook addiction disorder test that can help diagnose its severity and provide remedies to such withdrawal symptoms.

Filed under: Using Social Media

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