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Are You Addicted to TikTok? A New Study Identifies the Signs

Two girls watching TikToks

Have you ever hopped on TikTok with the intention of killing some time, or taking a quick break, only to find out that what should have been five minutes of scrolling has turned into an hour? If you can’t seem to get off the app, you’re not alone — a new study has discovered that more and more people have become addicted to the platform.

As reported in PsyPost, the study took data from 354 college students. Researchers looked at 173 TikTok users and 313 Facebook users to assess addictive behaviours to see how they were connected to the platforms. The Facebook users answered a series of questions from the Bergen Facebook Addiction Scale to assess if they were using the app in negative ways, including using it to ignore personal problems, using it to the point that it negatively impacts their work life or schooling, having obsessive thoughts about it and more. TikTok users completed a similar version of the scale that focused on these behaviours around TikTok specifically.

Related: All the best self-care tools from TikTok.

It turned out that the majority of TikTok users — almost 70 per cent — had “no risk” of TikTok addiction.  However,  25.4 per cent were classified as being at “low risk,” and  6.4 per cent were found to be “at-risk.” Researchers also found that female TikTok users were more likely to become addicted, compared to male users.

“Although most users appear to use TikTok in a non-problematic manner, the study demonstrates that the risk of overuse and possible problematic use exists and is associated with addiction-like behaviors that can potentially negatively impact the daily lives of sufferers,” study author Troy Smith said in PsyPost.

If you’re concerned you might be spending too much time on TikTok, it might be time to assess whether or not the platform is taking over your life.

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