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Obsessing about the news can make you physically and mentally unwell, study

The New York Times building in New York City
Credit: Ajay Suresh/Flickr/Wikipedia/Creative Commons 2.0

According to researchers from Texas Tech University, people who obsessively follow the news have a greater chance of not only have mental health issues, but physical ones as well, Study Finds reports.

In fact, the researchers described it as “significantly greater physical ill-being.”

The researchers reported that constantly checking the news and looking for updates, can result in individuals losing hope and ‘feeling powerless’ in the midst of what is happening. The researchers cited both the Ukraine war and the climate change hysteria as examples. [Note: they didn’t say hysteria.]

It results in people being in a ‘constant state of high alert’ and researchers found that 16.% of the participants in their study were in a category that they described as ‘severely problematic.’

They were so obsessed with the news that it was constantly dominating their thought life. It also affected personal relationships, made it difficult to focus on school and work and affected their sleep.

Significantly, their survey found:

  • 74% of those in the highest level of news consumption said they struggled with mental health issues, ‘quite a bit’ or ‘very much’, compared to only 8% overall.
  • 61% in the high news consumption category stated they experienced ‘quite a bit’ of ‘physical ill-being’ compared to only 6% overall.

READ: Obsessively watching the news can make you mentally and physically sick

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