FB Addicted Dudettes more Prone to Getting Sloshed!

FB Addicted Dudettes more Prone to Getting Sloshed!

Submitted by Subeditor on Tue, 2015-12-08 10:46 Washington D.C: Researchers have found links between certain patterns of connections among Facebook friends and drug and alcohol use among college-aged females.Using network data extracted from the Facebook accounts of 318 female students at UGA, the University of Georgia researchers found that the severity of child physical abuse is associated with how central an individual is in her social network, potentially increasing the risk for alcohol abuse.Lead author Assaf Oshri said, "If you try to describe the relationship between early child abuse to risk behavior such as substance abuse, it's interesting to know that online social networks play a role in this mechanism," Oshri said. "It's important to note that this is a correlational study, not experimental, so any causal association should not be made out of this data."The data extracted from the students' social networks, with the consent of the user, was mapped to show unique patterns of connections. Among the key findings of the study, students with a history of childhood physical abuse were found to have more densely interconnected groups of Facebook friends, patterns associated with higher risk for alcohol use and problems.Students with a history of childhood sexual abuse were found to have more loosely interconnected groups of Facebook friends, dominated by a few friends. This pattern is associated with decreased alcohol use and problems.Facebook users who were embedded in densely interconnected group of friends were more likely to use alcohol than those in more sparsely connected social networks. In other words, the more a Facebook user's friends are also friends with one another, the more likely she is to misuse alcohol.Students who were less important or less connected in their own networks were more likely to use alcohol.While Oshri noted there are definite limitations to the study, the potential for using online social networks to determine risk and to even create targeted interventions is a possibility. The study appears in the Journal of Studies on Alcohol and Drugs. (ANI)