Psychological and Emotional Impact of Teens Personal Life for Internet Addiction
About 9.72 percent of Chinese citizens between the ages of 13 and 30 suffer Internet addiction, a survey revealed recently (2008-01-18). The survey defines an Internet-addicted as one whose life, career and interpersonal relations are harmed by Internet use, said the report issued by the China Youth Association for Network Development (CYAND). Concerned by a number of high-profile internet-related deaths and juvenile crime, the Chinese government is now taking steps to stem internet addictions by banning new internet cafes and mulling restrictions on violent computer games.
China govt. then launched an experimental summer camp for 40 youngsters to try to wean them off their internet addiction and offering a softer option than the Internet Addiction Treatment Centre near Beijing which uses a blend of therapy and military drills to treat children addicted to online games, internet pornography and cybersex.
Chatting on the internet may be the root of internet addiction here in Taiwan and in China. That's according to a new cross-strait survey on internet addiction, conducted by Taiwan’s Chihlee Institute of Technology.
According to a study carried out by medics running the Paidon clinic in Athens for adolescents addicted to the Internet, 20 percent of adolescents are on the brink of a dangerous addiction to the Internet. The study, conducted on a sample of 1,021 15-year-olds, found that 1 percent of them were already addicted and in need of clinical treatment. The Member of the European Parliament underlined that the Greek nation is concerned about health conditions of children, who are being medicated for addiction on electronic media and PC games.
The women who have to deal with the online sex feel just as much that their guys are cheating as those whose guys are physically cheating. It's an emotional cheating and thinking that their guy is a jerk, or is not healthy, they feel insecure and bad about themselves. You may be among the ten percent of all Internet surfers afflicted with "Internet addiction disorder," a pathological condition that can lead to anxiety and severe depression.
Last summer (published on 23 January 2008) at their annual policy meeting, the American Medical Association considered having "excessive video gaming" formally certified as a psychiatric disorder and listing it in the Diagnostic & Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, the bible of mental diseases to which psychiatrists are addicted.
Used to be we knew what addiction was - the inability to kick booze or cigarettes or drugs. But then a second tier of addictions was identified, and we were introduced to the shocking, secretive world of obsessive gamblers and caffeine freaks and sex addicts and suburban chocoholics.
A study by Diane M. Wieland, PhD, RN, CS has been a psychiatric nurse for over twenty-five years stated that from gaming to sexual and emotional relationships, the internet is taking over lives. Online marital infidelity (cybersex) can lead to divorce and harm personal relationships. Individuals who seek out sexual partners online also appear to be at higher risk for sexually transmitted disease. Furthermore, such behaviors can lead to cybersexual addiction. Some physical symptoms include "cyber shakes," dry eyes, carpal tunnel syndrome and headaches.
Dr. Dannon and his colleagues have recently reported their findings in the Journal of Clinical Psychopharmacology that internet addiction is just like anyone else who is addicted to coffee, exercise, or talking on their cellular phone. As the times change, so do our addictions.
Two groups are at greatest risk from Internet addiction disorder. The first are teenagers.The second are women and men in their mid-50s suffering from the loneliness of an “empty nest. “Internet addiction is not manifesting itself as an ‘urge.’ It’s more than that. It’s a deep ‘craving.’ And if we don’t make the change in the way we classify Internet addiction, we won’t be able to treat it in the proper way.” he added.
Distressed family members blame fantasy games such as EverQuest and World of Warcraft, which differ from traditional video games because the player takes part in an ongoing drama with thousands of other players worldwide. Manufacturers say the games aren't addictive, but experts say the games provide an alternative life in which people who don't feel they are successful in real life
With public concern over online fraud, new research, funded by the Economic and Social Research Council, has revealed that even those people who declared themselves unconcerned about privacy would soon become opposed to ID cards if the way that they were asked for information made them feel that their privacy was threatened.
The researchers looked at how the wording of questions and the design of response options further influenced levels of self-disclosure. If the response 'I prefer not to say' appears at the top of an options list, users are far less likely to disclose information.
Spending too much time online a prevalent and damaging condition, or simply a bad habit among a select few? Stanford University School of Medicine researchers have taken an important step toward resolving the debate over whether compulsive use of the Internet merits a medical diagnosis.
In a first-of-its-kind, telephone-based study, the researchers found that more than one out of eight Americans exhibited at least one possible sign of problematic Internet use. The findings follow results from previous, less rigorous studies that found a significant number of the population could be suffering from some form of Internet addiction.
"Our telephone survey suggests that potential markers of problematic Internet use are present in a sizeable portion of the population," the researchers noted in their paper, which appears in the issue of CNS Spectrums: The International Journal of Neuropsychiatric Medicine.
"We often focus on how wonderful the Internet is - how simple and efficient it can make things," elaborated lead author Elias Aboujaoude, MD. "But we need to consider the fact that it creates real problems for a subset of people."
Aboujaoude, clinical assistant professor in psychiatry and behavioral sciences and director of Stanford's Impulse Control Disorders Clinic, said that a small but growing number of Internet users are starting to visit their doctors for help with unhealthy attachments to cyberspace. He said these patients' strong drive to compulsively use the Internet to check e-mail, make blog entries or visit Web sites or chat rooms, is not unlike what sufferers of substance abuse or impulse-control disorders experience: a repetitive, intrusive and irresistible urge to perform an act that may be pleasurable in the moment but that can lead to significant problems on the personal and professional levels.
According to preliminary research, the typical affected individual is a single, college-educated, white male in his 30s, who spends approximately 30 hours a week on non-essential computer use. While some may hear this profile and assume that a person's Internet "addiction" might actually be an extreme fondness for pornography, Aboujaoude stressed that pornography sites are just one part of the problem.
"Not surprisingly, online pornography and, to some degree, online gambling, have received the most attention - but users are as likely to use other sites, including chat rooms, shopping venues and special-interest Web sites," he said. "Our survey did not track what specific Internet venues were the most frequented by respondents, but other studies, and our clinical experience, indicate that pornography is just one area of excessive Internet use."
Although studies show that more than 160 million Americans are regular Internet users, little research has been conducted on problematic Internet use. A 1999 Center for Internet Studies survey of 18,000 Internet users, however, did find that 5.7 percent of the sample met suggested criteria for "compulsive" Internet use. And a 2002 study in the journal CyberPsychology & Behavior found that 60 percent of companies surveyed had disciplined, and more than 30 percent had terminated, employees for inappropriate Internet use.
"The issue is starting to be recognized as a legitimate object of clinical attention, as well as an economic problem, given that a great deal of non-essential Internet use takes place at work," said Aboujaoude. But he added that there is little consensus among clinicians on whether problematic Internet use is a distinct disorder or merely an expression of other psychopathologies, such as depression or obsessive-compulsive disorder.
In the Stanford study-which Aboujaoude said is the first large-scale, random-sample epidemiological one ever done-the researchers conducted a nationwide household survey and interviewed 2,513 adults. Because no generally accepted screening instrument exists for problematic Internet use, the researchers developed their questions by extrapolating from other compulsive and addictive conditions.
The researchers found that 68.9 percent were regular Internet users, which is consistent with previous studies, and that:
- 13.7 percent (more than one out of eight respondents) found it hard to stay away from the Internet for several days at a time
- 12.4 percent stayed online longer than intended very often or often
- 12.3 percent had seen a need to cut back on Internet use at some point
- 8.7 percent attempted to conceal non-essential Internet use from family, friends and employers
- 8.2 percent used the Internet as a way to escape problems or relieve negative mood
- 5.9 percent felt their relationships suffered as a result of excessive Internet use
Aboujaoude said he found most concerning the numbers of people who hid their nonessential Internet use or used the Internet to escape a negative mood, much in the same way that alcoholics might. "In a sense, they're using the Internet to 'self-medicate,'" he said. "And obviously something is wrong when people go out of their way to hide their Internet activity."
While the numbers indicate that a subset of people might have a problem with Internet use, Aboujaoude stressed that it's premature to say whether people in the sample actually have a clinical disorder. "We're not saying this is a diagnosis - we still need to learn a lot more," he said. "But this study was a necessary first step toward possibly identifying something clinically significant."
Aboujaoude said the next step is to conduct comprehensive clinical interviews on a large sample of people to better identify clinically relevant markers for problematic Internet use, and to better understand whether this phenomenon constitutes an independent psychological disorder.
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