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Internet Addiction Rates Declining

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According to a new study, the link between internet addiction and mental health problems for adolescents and young adults may not be as bad as initially believed.
Dimitri A. Christakis, the lead researcher of the study, utilized 224 eligible college students as test subjects and had them complete a survey that included the Internet Addiction Test (IAT) and Patient Health Questionnaire.

As per the results, four percent of the students surveyed scored in the “occasional problem” or “addicted” range on the IAT. This, of course, is a much lower reading than other studies have previously reported. The most noteworthy researchers on the subject, in the past, have said that anywhere from six to 10 percent of the population suffer from internet addiction.

The results indicate that there may be a substantial decline in internet addiction cases. Given the connection between internet addiction and severe depression, this is obviously good news for all parties involved.

“Pediatricians and parents continue to report overuse of the Internet in their patients and children, respectively,” said Christakis.

“Given the Internet is woven into the fabric of the lives of this generation of children, concerns about the potential for addiction are warranted and today’s college students are clearly at risk, given the considerable exposure that they have to the Internet.”

“Problematic Internet Usage in U.S. College Students: A Pilot Study,” was published online in BMC Medicine.

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