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Are you addicted to Internet?

Saturday, September 1, 2012 @ 06:09 PM
Dr Ioannis Syrigos

Internet Addiction (IAD) is becoming more and more of a problem lately.

What we mean by IAD? Internet overuse or pathological computer use or overdoing it in general with your computer and/or internet. Nowadays more and more people choose to spend more time on Facebook, or web surfing or emailing rather than directly communicating with people, exercising their body, or doing other more productive activities like going for walks, reading books, doing something creative, having a non-computer hobby, going out with friends etc.

IAD is relatively new and it has become a problem for the last 10-15 years, however nobody knows what the true effects will be for the generations that will have been addictive for more than 30-40 years. So basically our generation is an experiment for a new technology (computers) and a new means of communication (internet) with unknown consequences to our society and to us (our mind and body).

Signs and symptoms of IAD or computer addiction include:

-          Losing track of time online

-          Having trouble completing tasks at work or home

-          Isolation from family or friends

-          Feeling guilty or defensive about your Internet use

-          Feeling a sense of euphoria while involved in Internet activities

And physical symptoms include:

-          Pain and numbness in hands and wrists

-          Dry eyes or strained vision

-          Back aches, neck ache, headaches

-          Sleep disturbances

-          Pronounced weight gain or weight loss

And remember that Internet Addiction changes how the brain works. And if you say you are absurd, remember that small changes go unnoticed until they accumulate and are big enough to notice them.

Do not take me wrong, I am not saying that Internet is bad, it is a super useful tool, but like with all other tools if you overdo it you will have to accept the consequences.

And for those that would like to blame it on genetics, recently scientists have found out that people who spend lots of hours online, have a genetic component that is common to patients suffering from nicotine addiction.

For those addictive to sending/receiving emails, Aye Moah of Baydin Inc has created a Gmail/Chrome extension called INBOX PAUSE. Their motto ‘Take a break from email. Be Free’.

So are your thoughts revolved around internet and that you cannot live without it even one day? Do you have any symptoms?

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