Paris Hilton claims she invented it, but the rest of us have caught it — and now we’re all being diagnosed as nuts.
“Selfitis,” first coined in 2014 as a joke, is now being taken seriously by the American Psychiatric Association, which labels the obsessive urge to take selfies a genuine “psychological complex.”
Researchers who have been studying the phenomenon for The International Journal of Mental Health and Addiction say it’s no joke, and have developed a “Selfitis Behavior Scale” to determine how severely you are afflicted with the condition.
Participants in a study picked a number from one (for strongly disagree) to five (for strongly agree) to rate statements like “sharing my selfies creates healthy competition with my friends and colleagues”, and “I feel more popular when I post my selfies on social media,” to see how bad their problem was.
This is what they determined:
"The taking of selfies is a self-oriented action which allows users to establish their individuality and self-importance. According to some studies, selfie behavior is also associated with traits such as narcissism. Bevan investigated the role of narcissism, considerateness, and social attraction towards selfie behavior in terms of using selfie-sticks and found that selfie-stick users were perceived as less socially attractive, moderately narcissistic, and moderately inconsiderate...Although there is a strong argument that narcissism has a positive effect towards taking selfies, other researchers have found no relationship between selfie-taking and narcissism...social attractiveness was the primary motivation for posting selfies."
Researcher Dr. Janarthanan Balakrishnan said: “Typically, those with the condition suffer from a lack of self-confidence and are seeking to 'fit in' with those around them, and may display symptoms similar to other potentially addictive behaviors…Now the existence of the condition appears to have been confirmed, it is hoped that further research will be carried out to understand more about how and why people develop this potentially obsessive behavior, and what can be done to help people who are the most affected.”
In the end, it was determined that if you take at least three photos of yourself a day and post them to social media, you probably have selfitis.
Hear that Kim Kardashian?
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