Tinder users might be finding matches on the dating app, but hooking up is coming at a personal price: their self-worth.

All that swiping can really take a toll on a person's psychological well-being, especially since the app is all about being rejected or matched based on looks. Even if a user is matched with someone and seems to hit it off, they might be questioning in the back of their mind on their first date if that person is only interested in one thing. As a result, it could be that users feel like they have turned into sexual objects rather than really being seen for who they are as a person.

Now, a new study is suggesting that Tinder could be making people feel worse about themselves, which ultimately affects their self-esteem.

Presented at the American Psychological Association's Convention in Denver, Colo. this week, researchers from the University of North Texas conducted a study in which they asked 1,000 women and 273 men who had the age median of 20 years old a series of questions related to body satisfaction (including about their faces and body parts like their thighs) and self-esteem.

Analyzing the psychological effects of those who use the popular dating app, the researchers found that Tinder users were more critical about themselves and had a more negative outlook on their bodies than those who don't use the app. This then suggests that the harsh self-criticism could affect their self-worth.

"Tinder users reported having lower levels of satisfaction with their faces and bodies, experiencing higher levels of shame about their bodies, being more focused on their bodies as sexual objects, internalizing more strongly societal appearance ideals, making more frequent comparisons of their physical appearance to others, and having lower levels of self-worth than the men and women who eschewed Tinder," the study's authors write.

Interestingly enough, it's not only women who are at risk of having a lower self-worth than men. The study found that male Tinder users were just likely as women to lack self-esteem.

"Being actively involved with Tinder, regardless of the users' gender, was associated with body dissatisfaction, body shame, body monitoring, internalization of societal expectations of beauty, comparing oneself physically to others and reliance on media for information on appearance and attractiveness," Jessica Strubel, an assistant professor of merchandising and digital retailing at the University of North Texas and a co-author of the study, said.

In fact, men who used Tinder reported to having lower self-esteem than their female counterparts (of course, less men were included in the study, but this is because the researchers wanted to learn more about how women felt about objectification).

This could be because men are more sensitive about being rejected, and they are the ones who tend to do more swiping than women on the app.

While there could be some connection between how a person sees themselves when using the app, only about 8 percent of study participants reported to use Tinder. Also, just because many reported having low self-esteem doesn't necessarily mean that the dating app is directly influencing that.

Source: Time

Photo:  Robert Vitulano | Flickr

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