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Facebook, Twitter feed anxiety, says study

social media Updated: Jul 09, 2012 01:28 IST

Can't think of a day without Facebook or Twitter? Beware, as these popular social networking sites feed anxiety and can make you feel insecure, a new study has found.

A survey of hundreds of social network site users found that more than half of them admitted that the sites have changed their behaviour, and half of them said their lives had been altered for the worse.

Those who suffered a negative impact from social media said their confidence fell after comparing their own achievements to those of friends online.

Two-thirds said they found it hard to relax completely or to sleep after spending time on the sites, while one quarter of them said they had been left facing difficulties in their relationships or workplace after becoming confrontational online, the Daily Telegraph reported. The research, conducted by Salford Business School at the University of Salford in UK, also demonstrated the addictive powers of Internet, with 55% of people saying they felt “worried” when they could not access their Facebook or email accounts.

Over 60% of people said they felt compelled to turn off gadgets in order to have a break, with one in three of those surveyed saying they switched the devices off several times each day.

“If you are predisposed to anxiety it seems that the pressures from technology act as a tipping point, making people feel more insecure,” said Nicky Lidbetter of charity Anxiety UK, which commissioned the poll.