A new study suggests that the stress levels of people who quit Facebook dropped significantly after just one week. Researchers were able to assess the level of stress by looking at participants’ levels of cortisol.
- In the study, scientists asked 60 people to quit Facebook for five days and nearly 70 people to continue with their daily use of the social media platform.
- Both groups were asked questions about their levels of life satisfaction and stress.
- Scientists also assessed cortisol levels from participants’ saliva samples.
The study revealed that staying away from Facebook even for a brief period of time has its benefits.
Scientists decided to conduct the experiments after multiple people complained that Facebook has become an additional source of stress or can lower their self-esteem. These two reasons usually make people quit or take a so-called “Facebook vacation” for days, weeks, or months.
A Short “Facebook Vacation” Seems Very Beneficial
Lead author Eric Vanman reported that a 5-day Facebook vacation is associated with lower levels of cortisol, a stress hormone that shows how stressed a person really is. The other group experienced no similar changes.
Vanman’s team also found that people who quit Facebook reported a lower level of life satisfaction after 5 days, with many of them being relieved that the experiment was over so they could return to Facebook.
This drawback can only be caused by the social media platform’s addictive nature. Addicts experience withdrawal symptoms when they are no longer allowed to get their fix.
The good news is that during those five days, the participants who said no to Facebook spent more time with their friends in real-world scenarios. This habit can lead to higher levels of life satisfaction in the long run if people are consistent about it.
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