Embodied well-being through two media technologies: Virtual reality and social media

Kaylee Payne Kruzan*, Andrea Stevenson Won

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

22 Scopus citations


How the body is perceived through media is key to many well-being interventions. Researchers have examined the effects of platforms on users’ self-perceptions, including immersive virtual reality, nonimmersive virtual worlds, and social media such as Facebook. In this article, we use several conceptions of levels of embodiment to compare empirical work on the effects of virtual reality and social media as they relate to perceptions and conceptions of the self and body. We encourage social media researchers to utilize research on embodiment in virtual reality to help frame the effects of social media use on well-being. Similarly, researchers in immersive media should consider the opportunities and risks that may arise as embodied experiences become more social. We conclude our discussion with implications for future applications in mental health.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1734-1749
Number of pages16
JournalNew Media and Society
Issue number8
StatePublished - Aug 1 2019


  • Embodiment
  • self-presence
  • social media
  • virtual reality
  • well-being

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Communication
  • Sociology and Political Science


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