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Internet Addiction Disorder
Maria Garcia Duran
December 14, 2003
So far addictions have mainly focused on highs that are produced from the use of drugs or other external forces that affect the brain’s chemical responses. However it has recently been brought to the public’s attention that an individual can receive a similar kind of “high” from using the Internet. This malady has been termed Internet Addiction Disorder (IAD). The research for this disorder is fairly new and scarce, but the results leave something to mull over. It affects everyone involved with the “user,” and moreover there are a few psychologists who know how to treat it.
Internet Addiction Disorder
The growth of a hardly satisfied and very innovative population has created an environment where the saturated use of the computer, and its additional benefits is an orthodox. It no longer matters where one travels or how much room for luggage one has, a computer can be brought regardless of the inconveniences. This availability opens a door to the Internet that can be accessed from almost anywhere a person whishes to render its services. Just like any other hobby however some of its users start to spend an extended amount of time in it, which can lead to an addiction of the pastime. These people who cross the line are said to be suffering from a newfound diagnosis termed by researchers as Internet Addiction Disorder or (IAD) (Dr. Grohol, 2003, par. 1).
Since the craving people have to use the Internet unrestrained is a fairly new concept that has been brought to public attention just recently there has not been much research done in the field to date. And it is still a very debatable question whether it exists or not. Some say that the Internet is addictive to the point where it controls one’s life, others say that it is not the same as getting high or drunk to an extreme. Nevertheless the Internet is affecting the people who use it extensively whether it be called addictive or not.
According to Dr. John Grohol the original research cases were exploratory surveys which do not explain the relationship between the supposed behavior and its cause (2003, par. 2). In other words, the surveys can explain why a person feels and behaves in certain way, but they cannot conclude that the behavior has been caused by the prolonged usage of the internet (Dr. Grohol, 2003, par. 2). Grohol does, nevertheless, agree that people do have problems from spending too much time on the computer, and he relates to the idea that people engage in the activity because they do not want to deal with the problems in their lives (2003, par. 4). It is similar to the behavior that a person who watches a lot of TV reveals, or the person who reads an abundant amount of books, or that of the person who goes out for a few drinks regularly.
An alternative theory as to why people use the Internet to a great extent is a very plausible idea. Dr. Grohol has made a model (see insertion 1) where the individual is said to go through phases in their discovery of the Internet and its resources. The first stage occurs when the individual is new to the environment, a newcomer, or is an existing user that finds a new activity, it is referred to as the stage of enchantment or obsession (Dr. Grohol, 2003, par. 20). This is the phase that is highly “addictive” to the individual until of course they reaches stage two, disillusionment (Dr. Grohol, 2003, par. 20). In this stage the individual has to become uninterested in the activity they engage is so often, once that is accomplished the individual can safely reach the third stage, Balance (Dr. Grohol, 2003, par. 20). This balance symbolized a normalized usage of the internet, it is reached at a different period by everyone and the phases can still be recycled if the individual finds another interesting new activity (Dr. Grohol, 2003, par. 20).
1. the act of enlightening.
2. the state of being enlightened: to live in spiritual enlightenment.
3. (usually initial capital letter) Buddhism, Hinduism. prajna.
4. the Enlightenment, a philosophical movement of the 18th century, characterized by belief in the power of human reason and by innovations in political, religious, and educational doctrine.
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–noun, plural -ties.
1. the state or quality of being rational.
2. the possession of reason.
3. agreeableness to reason; reasonableness.
4. the exercise of reason.
5. a reasonable view, practice, etc.ra⋅tion⋅al⋅i⋅ty [rash-uh-nal-i-tee] Show IPA
Do not let the internet. There are other things you can do besides the internet.