HealthDay News — Binge-watching television is linked with feeling lonely and depressed, a new study suggests.
The study, conducted by researchers at the University of Texas at Austin, included more than 300 people. They were between the ages of 18 and 29. The researchers asked about their TV viewing habits and their moods.
The more lonely and depressed people were, the more likely they were to binge-watch TV. And, people binge-watched in an attempt to distract themselves from their negative feelings.
The researchers also found that people who lacked self-control were more likely to binge-watch TV. They were unable to stop even when they knew they had other tasks to complete.
“Physical fatigue and problems such as obesity and other health problems are related to binge-watching and they are a cause for concern,” study co-author Yoon Hi Sung, a PhD candidate, said in a news release from the International Communication Association. “When binge-watching becomes rampant, viewers may start to neglect their work and their relationships with others. Even though people know they should not, they have difficulty resisting the desire to watch episodes continuously.”
The study is to be presented at the International Communication Association’s annual meeting in Puerto Rico, which will be held in late May. Findings from meetings are generally considered preliminary until they’ve been published in a peer-reviewed journal.