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Obsession With Digital Communication

digital communication obsessionWhen someone is obsessed with digital communication, they are constantly on a digital communication device sending, awaiting and receiving some kind of communication. This may be public communication, such as articles, blogs, press releases or social media sites, or personal communication, such as any form of private message. This phenomenon developed over recent years with the emergence of personal communication devices. Decades ago, everyone was adjusted to the fact that communication was not instant, but in modern times, it is very common to see a person behaving in a manic or addicted way toward their communication device, putting too much importance on the communication that comes through it.

There have been many studies into why people cannot seem to put down their phones, tablets, computers and other communications devices. Some of the more widely circulated and credible ideas about our modern digital communication obsession are:

  • “Staying connected.” Most people attribute their needy behavior toward their communication device to not wanting to fall out of sync with the world by missing out on breaking news stories, current events, social network gossip or personal communication.
  • “Fear of being alone.” A possible cause for an obsession with digital communication is not being able to be alone with one’s thoughts. In the past, this was primarily expressed through in person or phone communication, but modern digital communication devices can give the same feeling of communication despite being more removed.
  • “Demanding entertainment.” Modern generations are raised with fast commercials, invasive advertising, short sentences in reading assignments and general media bombardment. It is no wonder that boredom can set in more rapidly than it used to, turning people obsessively toward their personal communication devices.
  • “Fragmented and broken social abilities.” A very commonly cited psych opinion of digital communication obsession is that the value on in person communication and relationship abilities is dwindling and being replaced with the more secondhand version of communication and relationships that is digital communication.

Is Internet Addiction Real?

addicted to the internetPerhaps the most difficult aspect of internet addiction is that many people do not believe in its existence. The internet is a relatively new phenomenon in our lives. We have not had many years to study it from a psychological or sociological perspective. We are unsure of its long term ramifications toward society and humanity at large. However, one thing we have identified about it is that it has addictive qualities. Similar to a gambling addiction, an internet addiction is a behavior that gives immense pleasure to some people, so much so that certain people begin to use the internet compulsively and lose control of the amount of time they spend on it.

Sometimes the phrase “anything can be an addiction” is thrown around lightly. While a great number of things can have appeal to a great number of people, not everything is addictive. The internet came to be defined as addictive through a certain set of qualifications. The internet was found to have a particular effect on people that rivaled the effect of gambling or sex. Because the internet revolutionized the not only the way we access information, but the way we maintain relationships and keep ourselves entertained, it does not quite compare to anything else that has ever been available. Its novelty has become a cultural obsession, and for many people, an individual addiction.

For some people, time on the internet creates the pleasure chemical dopamine within their brains. Dopamine is universally the brain chemical that is released when we are experiencing something rewarding and pleasurable. Substances and activities that tend to create more dopamine for people than others tend to be the ones we identify as addictive. Not everyone can produce dopamine at the same rate. Some people have to work much harder to achieve dopamine. The healthy way of achieving it is to do something extraordinary, like start a business and work to make it succeed or climb a 14,000 foot mountain. The unhealthy way of achieving it is through addiction. Sadly, the internet with all its uses and wonders, has become an addiction modality.

Receive Treatment for Internet Addiction

internet addiction treatmentInternet addiction is identified as a case of a person using the internet so heavily that it negatively effects the other areas of their life. Because internet use is a recent phenomenon and because it is a behavior instead of a substance, internet addiction is frequently not taken seriously. This kind of reasoning is a fallacy. It is indeed a very serious situation when a person is foregoing social time, personal responsibilities, sleep and meals in order to spend time online.

The internet is a source of much information, fascination and controversy. It has changed the way we approach knowledge and information, and how we view the world. It has been very empowering for humanity to suddenly have an infinite amount of information at its fingertips. It is because of this abrupt and advantageous shift that the internet has become addictive to certain types of people. With so much information and so many opportunities to explore online, some people’s lives have become imbalanced because of the time they spend on the internet. School and work obligations are being neglected. Personal relationships are suffering. Physical health is declining. Not everyone has a handle on how much time they can allow themselves on the internet before it begins to negatively effect their lives.

Though internet addiction does not pose a serious, immediate threat to the addict, it does pose the risk of a gradual decline into an unhealthy state of existence. If internet addiction is allowed to thrive within a person, it will not be long before their reputation, relationships and health are damaged. Internet addiction requires critical thinking and cognitive analysis to overcome. If time on the internet is having negative effects on your life, take steps in order to end the addiction. Set a schedule for yourself to outline how much internet time you will allow yourself in a day. Read self help books on addiction. Fill your schedule with meaningful and necessary activities. If these things do not work and your life is still suffering, do not be ashamed to seek addiction treatment or counseling. Do whatever it takes to get your life under control!


Breaking the Addiction to Internet and Digital Communication

internet digital communication addictionThe primary reason that internet addiction flourishes everywhere is because people do not take it seriously as an addiction. The new North American standard for owning digital communications devices is a minimum of a cell phone and a personal computer, laptop or tablet for every person aged 17 and over. With the ownership of these devices so celebrated in our culture, it is not surprising that addiction to them has become a trend. They provide a world of entertainment to their user and they are completely portable, enabling people to depend on them more heavily than they should for entertainment, information and relationship.

It is more a state of mind that people become addicted to rather than simply a behavior. Digital communication offers its users pleasurable feelings of power, distraction and connectivity. These pleasurable feelings create the brain chemical dopamine which tells the psyche that something rewarding is taking place. Those prone to addiction have been found to have problems creating a normal amount of dopamine, so when they find something that creates it in greater quantities, they become very attached to that substance or activity. This is true even of things such as gambling and internet usage. Addictions can be common or obscure, and because of how greatly the internet and digital communication changed our lives, it has become some people’s addiction.

Many people still scoff at the idea of receiving addiction treatment for something like the internet, saying that it is not a real addiction like alcoholism or drug abuse. While it is true that an internet addiction is less of an immediate threat to a person than a drug like heroin is, it can still meet the qualifications of a severe addiction. This is exemplified in the ways it has been found to deteriorate a person’s physical health, personal relationships and performance at work, school or personal vocations. For this reason, internet addiction treatment has become a legitimate program at many addiction treatment centers and rehabilitation facilities. Staff and counselors have the training to help people with their internet addiction problems, so if you are ready to break away from your excessive internet usage, do not hesitate to reach out today!

What is Internet Addiction

internet addictionInternet addiction goes by many names, including compulsive internet use and problematic internet use. It is a very recently discovered addiction, relatively speaking, because the internet is a new global phenomenon. Despite the fact that it is a behavioral addiction, similar to gambling, instead of a chemical addiction, such as to drugs or alcohol, internet addiction can still be very severe and debilitating. Many people who have struggled to manage their internet addiction have found themselves with damaged relationships, credibility and personal health. In order to prevent these unwanted effects of internet addiction, seek addiction treatment if you or someone you are close to begins to demonstrate the following signs:

  • Excessive time spent on the internet is the most obvious sign of a problem. When an individual starts foregoing time with their family and friends, neglecting responsibilities and being apathetic towards activities they used to enjoy in the name of having time on the internet, they are showing signs of an internet addiction.
  • A person who is addicted to the internet will become irritable or emotional when forced to separate themselves from the internet. This could be a spouse demanding attention, a family wanting to have a meal together or a friend expressing irritation with the person’s internet habit. All addicts have negative emotional reactions when they are forced away from the object of their addiction.
  • There can even be signs of physical deterioration caused by an internet addiction. If excessive time on the internet is the only thing that has changed in a person’s life and they are visibly losing muscle mass, experiencing weight fluctuation and their posture is growing worse, it is likely that their internet addiction is taking a physical toll on them.

Internet addiction does not put a person in immediate danger the way that a substance addiction does, but it does damage their mental and physical health more and more over time. If you or someone you are close to is showing signs of internet addiction, reach out to the services of an addiction specialist. They will take the matter seriously and see that you receive the help that is needed.