Have you ever thought about the obsession for selfies that has taken over the entire world?
Apparently, it has been linked to many mental health conditions that focus on the obsession with the looks.
The psychiatrist Dr. David Veal says:
“Two out of three of all the patients who come to see me with Body Dysmorphic Disorder since the rise of camera phones have a compulsion to repeatedly take and post selfies on social media sites.”
“Cognitive behavioral therapy is used to help a patient to recognize the reasons for his or her compulsive behavior and then to learn how to moderate it.”
Can taking selfies be associated with addiction, mental illness, and narcissism? Numerous psychologists claim that it can, and warn parents to be extra cautious and control what their children do online.
The story of the 19-year old British male teenager Danny Bowman shocked the world. This boy was obsessed with making the perfect shot of himself, so he spent 10 hours daily, taking 200 selfies, and eventually tried to commit suicide after he failed to take the perfect selfie.
He lost about 30 pounds, dropped out of school and stayed at home for 6 months, trying to get the right picture. As soon as he woke up, he took 10 pictures, and became frustrated as he couldn’t get the desired effects. This made him try to take his own life by overdosing, but his mother saved him.
Bowman told The Mirror:
“I was constantly in search of taking the perfect selfie and when I realized I couldn’t, I wanted to die. I lost my friends, my education, my health and almost my life. ”
He is considered to be the first selfie addict in the UK, so he now treats it, along with his OCD and Body Dysmorphic Disorder.
During his treatment at the Maudsley Hospital in London, his iPhone was taken away for intervals of 10 minutes, which increased to half an hour and then an hour.
“It was excruciating, to begin with, but I knew I had to do it if I wanted to go on living. ”
According to the UK Public health officials, addiction to social media like Facebook and Twitter is an illness and over 100 patients sought treatment annually.
Pamela Rutledge in Psychology Today says:
“Selfies frequently trigger perceptions of self-indulgence or attention-seeking social dependence that raises the damned-if-you-do and damned-if-you-don’t spectre of either narcissism or very low self-esteem. ”
The increased rate of digital narcissism these days is a serious issue that puts huge constant pressure on people, who struggle to achieve unfeasible goals. People dream to become like their favorite pop stars, models, and idols.
Yet, you need to be careful not to become self-destructive in an attempt to hide your fragile self-esteem. You need to remain in touch with reality and lower your aspirations, in order to remain hay and satisfied with yourself.