So there is a selfies disorder called ‘Selfitis’… and a way to check yourself

It started off as a hoax by satirical website Snopes in 2014 but has now been researched and found to actually exist.

Chiyangwa and Infantino selfie moment

A paper, published November 29 in the International Journal of Mental Health and Addiction, looked at it as well as ‘nomophobia’ – a phobia for not having a phone at hand.

Hundreds of students were put together to develop a “Selfitis Behavior Scale” with three levels: borderline, acute, and chronic. It was graded as

  • Borderline –  takes three selfies a day, but doesnt post them on social media
  • Acute –  Actually posts those pictures
  • Chronic – “uncontrollable urge to take photos of one’s self round the clock and posting the photos on social media more than six times a day.”

How to test yourself:

Answer the following 20 questions on a scale of one to five, with one being strongly disagree and five being strongly agree. At the end add up all of your scores.

The higher your score out of 100, the greater the likelihood that you suffer from selfitis.

  1. Taking selfies gives me a good feeling to better enjoy my environment.
  2. Sharing my selfies creates healthy competition with my friends and colleagues.
  3. I gain enormous attention by sharing my selfies on social media.
  4. I am able to reduce my stress level by taking selfies.
  5. I feel confident when I take a selfie.
  6. I gain more acceptance among my peer group when I take selfies and share them on social media.
  7. I am able to express myself more in my environment through selfies.
  8. Taking different selfie poses helps increase my social status.
  9. I feel more popular when I post my selfies on social media.
  10. Taking more selfies improves my mood and makes me feel happy.
  11. I become more positive about myself when I take selfies.
  12. I become a strong member of my peer group through selfie postings.
  13. Taking selfies provides better memories about the occasion and the experience.
  14. I post frequent selfies to get more “likes” and comments on social media.
  15. By posting selfies, I expect my friends to appraise me.
  16. Taking selfies instantly modifies my mood.
  17. I take more selfies and look at them privately to increase my confidence.
  18. When I do not take selfies, I feel detached from my peer group.
  19. I take selfies as trophies for future memories.
  20. I use photo-editing tools to enhance my selfie to look better than others.


As it stands though therapists cannot diagnose it so the behavior test is all they go by. In effect some experts say it remains a hoax.

Dr. Mark Salter, a spokesman for the UK’s Royal College of Psychiatrists, who made his opinion quite clear: “Selfitis doesn’t exist, and it shouldn’t exist”

That said there is an effect apparent on people who spend too much time trying to nail the perfect selfie, pout included, instead of face to face interactions.

So the issue is up in the air so don’t be judgy.  We see you.

With information from Insider and The Mirror