As more people examine the idea that the internet and social media can be addicting, a new study has found that Facebook usage can activate some of the same regions of the brain as substance abuse.
The study, published in the journal Psychological Reports: Disability and Trauma, examined the brains of graduate students as they were exposed to images, including Facebook logos. Researchers found that seeing the Facebook logo stimulated the areas of the brain connected to impulsive behavior. The pattern of stimulation was similar to that of people addicted to cocaine, according to the study.
However, the Facebook users differed from drug addicts in that the area of their brain used to regulate their behavior worked regularly, according to the study’s co-author.