Brains Of Facebook Users Show Differences
October 20, 2011 by UPI - United Press International, Inc.
LONDON, Oct. 19 (UPI) — British researchers say people with lots of friends on Facebook tend to have several areas of the brain larger than those of Facebook users with fewer friends.
“We were interested in understanding whether social networks and our participation in them is reflected in brain structure and function,” lead researcher Geraint Rees of University College London said Tuesday.
Rees and fellow researchers scanned the brains of 125 college students who are Facebook users, and then compared the scans with the number of online and real-world friends the students had, USA Today reported.
The number of Facebook friends that students had correlated with the size of the gray matter in several areas of the brain, Rees said.
One of the areas, the amygdala, is associated with memory and emotional responses and had already been found in an earlier study to be larger in people who had many real-world friends.
The new study suggests that’s also true for those with lots of online friends, Rees said.