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quitting_Facebook(TNC)—Need a pick-me up? Try taking a Facebook break. Researchers at the Happiness Research Institute in Copenhagen studied the moods of 1,095 regular Facebook users over a week’s time. They divided participants into two groups: those who kept logging onto Facebook per normal, and those who agreed to quit the site for a week.

The results? Those who used the popular social network were 55 percent more likely to feel stressed. Meanwhile, those on a Facebook furlough reported feeling happier and less sad and lonely than active Facebookers. They also had a significantly higher level of life satisfaction than the other group.

Other studies have shown a link between Facebook and symptoms of depression. A study published in the spring in the Journal of Social and Clinical Psychology found that spending a lot of time on Facebook might lead to depressed feelings because of tendency to make social comparisons. Most people post predominantly positive items, creating an idyllic impression of their lives.

“Social media is a nonstop great news channel,” authors of the Happiness Research Institute’s study wrote, “a constant flow of edited lives, which distorts our perception of reality.”

©2015 Star Tribune (Minneapolis)
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