Home Psychology Study Links Selfies To Mental Illnesses Such As Psychopathy And Narcissism

Study Links Selfies To Mental Illnesses Such As Psychopathy And Narcissism


Many of us recently have become insatiably obsessed with taking selfies and posting them on our social media accounts. This obsession occurs every time – from taking selfies in front of the Fontana Di Trevi or the Eiffel Tower when we are traveling to taking selfies when we are at work. It seems that we have become addicted to this “disease” popularly called “selfitis.”

And while it seems harmless looking at Instagram stories and posts and occasionally judging the Millennials for doing this the most, we don’t see the real reason behind all this, and it is not so harmless.

Namely, according to a recent study conducted at Ohio State University, those individuals who posted more pictures of themselves ranked higher on the narcissism and psychopathy scale.

The researchers behind the study asked the 800 participants between the ages of 18 and 40 to fill out a questionnaire answering about how often they posted photos on social media and whether and how they edited the photos before posting them. They were also asked to fill out another questionnaire that measured their tendency to focus on their appearance and their anti-social behaviors.

The researchers then discovered that there is a direct link between posting a large number of photos with both narcissism and psychopathy.

On the other hand, editing photos before posting was only associated with narcissism. Narcissism presents a distorted self-image which oftentimes hides underlying insecurity and low self-esteem, and psychopathy involves an impulsive behavior combined with a lack of empathy and compassion.

So, this makes sense given the impulsivity of the psychopaths. They don’t have the time to edit the photos. They just post them.

Previous studies have also linked high Facebook use with narcissism and low self-esteem. And it is not so much spending a great amount of time on Facebook as it is having an excessive number of friends that is linked to having a narcissistic personality disorder.

Finally, yes taking selfies is fun, but be careful to not obsess over it. You don’t need constant approval of how beautiful and “perfect” you are. Because everyone is in their own way. Don’t let yourself get dragged into this world of instant gratification and shallow connections.

Mary Wright

Mary Wright is a professional writer with more than 10 years of incessant practice. Her topics of interest gravitate around the fields of the human mind and the interpersonal relationships of people.
Mary Wright