Before discussing options for computer addiction treatment, one point regarding addiction to the computer needs to be made : Computer addiction is not an official psychiatric diagnosis. Despite a growing movement to have obsessive computer and internet use included in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM), so far this has not happened.
In relative terms when disadvantages of computer addiction compared to other addictions such as alcoholism and drug addiction, computer addiction is a very new phenomenon. Most of the disorders included in the DSM have been extensively researched and treated in some form for at least fifty years – and many such as depression have been studied for well over one hundred years.
In contrast, the computer itself has only been widely available for twenty or so years. Computer addiction is a relatively new term used to describe a dependency on one’s computer. Computer addiction is not limited to personal computers (PCs). It covers video games and the Internet and has already been given a label by psychologists, namely Internet addiction disorder (IAD). In short, excessive internet use has not been around long enough or sufficiently studied to warrant official disorder status.
Still, is there any doubt that some people spend far too much time online and that this can significantly interfere with their functioning in the “real world”?
Computer addiction is a loosely used term for the excessive use of computers to the extent that it interferes with daily life. Excessive use may explain problems in social interaction, mood, personality, work ethic, relationships, thought processes, or sleep deprivation.
Whether we call this computer addiction, internet addition, or something is largely irrelevant. Online habits that far exceed what most people would consider “healthy”. For example ten-plus hours per day, can have serious consequences for the addict.
In my opinion, computer addiction, like any...
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