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Internet Addiction: You Know You Have It When

Updated on January 17, 2008

What is Internet Addiction?

Internet Addiction Disorder (IAD) is a highly debated disorder that some believe is only a theory made as a satirical hoax. Others believe that IAD is an impulse control disorder that is similar to pathological gambling.

Technically, an "addiction" is any compulsive behavior that can cause the continued craving to use any psychoactive substance.

It has been noted that people with an internet addiction show the same characteristics as one who is addicted to alchol or drugs.

  • Greater sense of isolation
  • Diminished social interaction
  • Reduced attention to personal hygiene
  • More legal difficulties
  • Change in eating and sleeping patterns
  • Increased irritability
  • Reluctance to change the compulsive behavior

Symptoms of internet addiction

For the most part some of the signs if Internet Addiction are obvious such as:

  • Long hours on the computer
  • Late nights on the internet
  • Noticeable decline in work performance
  • Make an increased number of errors and mistakes
  • Sudden withdrawal from people
  • Loss of sense of time
  • Feelings of restlessness, moodiness, depression, or irritabilty, when not allowed to use the internet
  • Uses the internet to avoid and escape daily life and problems, such as feelings of hopelessness, guilt, anxiety, and depression.

Other symptoms may not be as noticeable while they occuring, such as:

When you're in the shower, and you:

  • Take 3 minute showers because you can't wait to get back on the internet.
  • Take 20 minute showers because you can't stop thinking about your next blog, chat, search, game, etc.

When you're eating dinner, and:

  • You're done before you give the food time to cool.
  • You eat while on the internet.

Internet Addiction Disorder

Treatment of Internet Addiction

  • Turn the computer off and take a break.
  • Go to the park (WITHOUT your laptop, pen, or paper)
  • Get involved with the community.
  • Join a group, outside of Yahoo and Google groups.
  • Set guidelines as to when you can use the computer (hourly time frame and the time according to the hands on the clock)

If you cannot overcome your addiction to the internet, you may consider a 12- step addiction group, to help you see your way through.

Common Internet Activities

Those activies that will easily succumb one to an Internet Addiction include:

  • Online Gambling
  • Online Pornography
  • Ebay
  • Shopping with various online stores
  • Online Stock Trading
  • Blogging
  • Online Games
  • Chats
  • Online Forums


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    • Shil1978 profile image

      Shil1978 10 years ago

      Heard some time back that a South Korean died after playing online games nonstop for 50 hours or so. I would think that is addiction.

    • MrMarmalade profile image

      MrMarmalade 10 years ago from Sydney

      I guess you have hit the nail on the head

      I wondered what was happening to me? Now I know.

      I am going nuts.