This is Your Brain on Facebook. Any Questions?

There’s a link between the size of certain parts of our brains and the number of friends that we have on Facebook, according to recent studies reported in this article.  This discovery only indicates a correlation however, not a cause-effect relationship. It’s hard to say, reports Reuters, whether “having more Facebook connections makes particular parts of the brain larger or whether some people are simply pre-disposed, or ‘hard-wired,’ to have more friends.”

Online social networks are so novel that it’s hard to say what kind of effect they have on us. Four parts of the brain were discovered to be larger when a person had more friends – but interestingly enough, “the thickness of grey matter in the amygdala was also linked to the number of real-world friends people had, but the size of the other three regions appeared to be correlated only to online connections.”

Could that be an indication our online relationships cause different reactions in our brains than the real world ones? What do you think? Do you treat online friendships differently?

Ritu Walia is myGreenlight’s Member Coordinator.

Comments (2)

  1. Whether offline or online, it depends on quality of relationship. If you have 5000 friends online but have no deep relationship at all, I don’t think our brain will be different. We need to have deep relationship. Quality but not quantity.

  2. I do treat online friendships differently. Since there is nothing but the words (no facial expressions or body language) I tend to be much more careful about discussing controversial matter’s. Though, if our online friendship is an extension of a personal friendship, that isn’t an issue.

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