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The present study investigated the links between daily stress, social support, Facebook use, and Facebook Addiction Disorder (FAD). Two varieties of social support were considered, according to the communication channel: offline and online. In a sample of 309 Facebook users (age: M(SD) = 23.76(4.06), range: 18-56), daily stress was positively related to the intensity of Facebook use and to tendencies towards Facebook addiction. The link between daily stress and intensity of Facebook use was negatively moderated by perceived offline social support, indicating that individuals who received low levels of support offline were particularly likely to increase their Facebook use at higher levels of daily stress. Perceived online social support partly mediated the positive relationship between Facebook use intensity and tendencies towards FAD. It is remarkable that Facebook use intensity is systematically related to both positive (i.e., receiving online social support) and negative (i.e., building up FAD) consequences. Thereby, individuals who receive high levels of social support online tend to be at risk for tendencies towards FAD. Thus, while offline social support might protect mental health, online support might influence it negatively. This should be considered when assessing individuals at risk for obsessive Facebook use and when planning interventions to deal with FAD.
This article was published in the following journal.
Name: Psychiatry research
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