Internet Addiction: A Brief Summary of Research and Practice

Current Psychiatry Reviews

Volume 8 Issue 4 ISSN: 1573-4005

Internet Addiction: A Brief Summary of Research and Practice

by Hilarie Cash, Ph.D., Cosette Rae, MSW, Ann H. Steel, MD, MA, Alexander Winkler

Abstract

Problematic computer use is a growing social issue which is being debated worldwide. Internet Addiction Disorder (IAD) ruins lives by causing neurological complications, psychological disturbances, and social problems. Surveys in the United States and Europe have indicated alarming prevalence rates between 1.5 and 8.2% [1]. There are several reviews addressing the definition, classification, assessment, epidemiology, and co-morbidity of IAD [2-5], and some reviews [6-8] addressing the treatment of IAD. The aim of this paper is to give a preferably brief overview of research on IAD and theoretical considerations from a practical perspective based on years of daily work with clients suffering from Internet addiction. Furthermore, with this paper we intend to bring in practical experience in the debate about the eventual inclusion of IAD in the next version of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM).

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