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Journal of Behavioral Addictions
Authors: Cecilie Schou Andreassen, Mark D. Griffiths, Siri Renate Gjertsen, Elfrid Krossbakken, Siri Kvam, and Ståle Pallesen

Abstract

Aims

Although relationships between addiction and personality have previously been explored, no study has ever simultaneously investigated the interrelationships between several behavioral addictions, and related these to the main dimensions of the five-factor model of personality.

Methods

In this study, 218 university students completed questionnaires assessing seven different behavioral addictions (i.e., Facebook addiction, video game addiction, Internet addiction, exercise addiction, mobile phone addiction, compulsive buying, and study addiction) as well as an instrument assessing the main dimensions of the five-factor model of personality.

Results

Of the 21 bivariate intercorrelations between the seven behavioral addictions, all were positive (and nine significantly). The results also showed that (i) Neuroticism was positively associated with Internet addiction, exercise addiction, compulsive buying, and study addiction, (ii) Extroversion was positively associated with Facebook addiction, exercise addiction, mobile phone addiction, and compulsive buying, (iii) Openness to experience was negatively associated with Facebook addiction and mobile phone addiction, (iv) Agreeableness was negatively associated with Internet addiction, exercise addiction, mobile phone addiction, and compulsive buying, and (v) Conscientiousness was negatively associated with Facebook addiction, video game addiction, Internet addiction, and compulsive buying and positively associated with exercise addiction and study addiction.

Conclusions

The positive associations between the seven behavioral addictions suggest one or several underlying pathological factors. Hierarchical multiple regressions showed that personality traits explained between 6% and 17% of the variance in the seven behavioral addictions, suggesting that personality to a varying degree explains scores on measures of addictive behaviors.

Open access