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Internet addiction: when the virtual becomes pathology

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Internet addiction is a rather widespread problem, even if many find it difficult to admit that they are victims.

Today as never before, especially after the advent of social media, internet addiction has become a very widespread problem. Even if those who live it hardly admit they have a disorder, those who are at their side notice it very well, feeling afflicted and helpless. Let's see what the symptoms are and what to do to get out of the abuse of technology .

Internet addiction: the symptoms

The term Internet Addiction Disorder (IAD) was coined in 1995 by the American psychiatrist Ivan Goldberg. At the time, however, it indicated gambling abuse which resulted in victims having very negative consequences on their lives. To date, internet addiction has spread to the entire virtual world and goes far beyond gambling addiction. With the advent of social media, the pathological use of technology has become impressive, so much so that it is difficult to look around and find people without the smartphone 'glued' to their hands. Internet addiction has clear symptoms , impossible not to notice:

  • need to spend more and more time and connect more frequently to get satisfaction;
  • disinterest in everything that is not the internet;
  • agitation, nervousness, obsessive thoughts, depressive symptoms and anxiety when the connection is broken, either by other people or by forces of a greater cause;
  • inability to interrupt or control the use of the 'virtual';
  • continue to use the internet even if you are aware that you have an addiction that causes family, psychological and social problems.

Furthermore, those who develop an addiction to the internet also lose interest in interpersonal relationships. They have frequent mood swings, they struggle to have a perception of real time and to distinguish life from fiction. Finally, they develop physical ailments such as: insomnia , carpal tunnel, neck and back pain and vision problems.

Computer addiction: what to do?

Internet Addiction Disorder embraces different fields: from gambling to compulsive shopping, passing through addiction to virtual relationships, pornography and the obsession with finding information on the net. Hardly, those who have problems of this type admit that they need help, so it is not easy to show them the way out, that is a path of cognitive behavioral psychotherapy .

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