Researchers say those who create and spread conspiracy theories about COVID-19 are using the provisional nature of science to paint scientists as "malignant actors" and discredit findings.
The propensity to believe in conspiracy theories may be a result of genetic determination, cognitive capacity, and affective reactions. Researchers found the representation of memes acts as neural network attractor states in the brain, linking them with the formation of conspiracy theories.
Those who flout COVID recommendations are less agreeable, have lower intellect and tend to be more extroverted than those who adhere to recommendations. COVID non-conformists also prioritize self-interest and personal freedom and show greater tolerance for social deviance, a new study reports.
The coronavirus pandemic has sparked an increase of people reporting feelings of paranoia, especially in states where there is low adherence to mask mandates. Researchers report paranoia was associated with an increased acceptance of conspiracy theories, including believing anti-vaccine information and Q-Anon conspiracies.
Researchers warn that "deprogramming" beliefs of those who believe in outlandish conspiracy theories may be detrimentally harmful. Instead, they suggest a more cautious approach, such as listening to their concerns and problems, may prove to be a better option.
People are reporting an uptick in personal "doomscrolling" activities online. Marked by consuming excessive amounts of negative content during one sitting, doomscrolling may be linked to anxiety. Researchers provide suggestions about how people can halt doomscrolling activities.
Belief in conspiracy theories is causing problems within families and other close relationships. The growth of conspiratorial belief may be a result of social media outlets making it easier for those who believe in conspiracies to find other believers and share misinformation. Researchers say discussing your concerns for those close to you who believe in conspiracies requires a very careful approach.
Research has long revealed an association between belief in conspiracy theories and mental health disorders. A new study reports followers of the radical QAnon group are significantly more likely to suffer from mental health problems, including depression, anxiety, and schizophrenia, than the general population.
Belief in conspiracy theories surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic predicts personal resistance to coronavirus vaccination and preventative behaviors, such as mask-wearing.
Heavy metal music may have a bad reputation, but a new study reveals the music has positive mental health benefits for its fans.