Whoa! Dr. Barry Lubetkin is touching on a very hot topic this week. One that I dare say touches many of us and/or members of our families! Just think about the hours spent on mindless game playing, endless emails (as opposed to face to face or person to person phone calls) as a form of communication and add in the timeless fascination with the Internet as the go to resource for information and fact on any and every subject in the world.
” Mental Health professionals are disturbed by the growing dependence on the intense pleasure and distraction capability that chronic cruising the internet is providing millions; Teenagers who search endlessly for games or social media contacts. Stay at home moms who seek out shopping bargains and then return everything because the initial impulse to buy was fueled by boredom. Men, both lonely and married, and often both, who spend countless hours denying and escaping their daily reality of stress by immersing into the world of pornography.
The definition of internet addiction is largely understood in terms of how the time spent on the screen and keyboard interferes with normal and role-expected behavior. Are work or social obligations being ignored? Is there an actual shift in conscious awareness occurring (eg.attention and focus on the moment disappears)? Do endless hours pass without realization?
Do other potentially problematic habits regularly accompany internet activity such as drinking, overeating, overspending, chronic masturbation? Are normal family conversations stunted or non -existent?
We know that actual brain wave changes occur for many folks when they go on the internet, as well as neurotransmitter changes which regulate mood. For these reasons, it is likely that over dependence on the internet will become progressive and more and more difficult to give up.
Self diagnose your addiction. Be brutally honest with yourself. Attempt to identify what needs in your life are not being met by normal means. What are you really escaping from? Are there alternative ways you can reduce your stress or loneliness. Even serious bloggers like many of us are not immune if our need for recognition or approval from others is interfering with enjoying our lives in other ways. Get more information from me at firstname.lastname@example.org”.