Internet addiction and its cognitive behavioral therapy
Şenormancı, Ö (2010) Internet addiction and its cognitive behavioral therapy. Anatolian Journal of Psychiatry (Anadolu Psikiyatri Dergisi), 11 (3). pp. 261-268.
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Despite its short history, internet has become an indispensible part of daily life. It has been observed that individuals who increasingly spend most of their time in the virtual world, lose control of their habit and experience dysfunctionalities in their professional, social and private lives. Today this fact emerges as a widely discussed topic. Prevalance of internet addiction is reported to be around 1.5-8.2%. Prevalence discrepancies may be explained by different scales used to diagnose 'internet addiction', different methods employed for different studies, differences among target populations for each study and social and cultural differences. Cognitive behavioural interventions (CBI) are the most efficient and widely used treatment approach for internet addiction. This paper reviews how internet addiction is conceptualized and treated by cognitive behavioural approaches. As internet addiction have lots of similarities to alcohol and drug addiction, similar CBI are used in treatment of both conditions. Since it is impossible to eliminate use of internet from daily life, methods that aim to control the amount of time spent and purpose of internet use become the most prominent elements of treatment interventions. There is still room for controlled and standardised studies to facilitate further understanding of 'Internet Addiction', that will eventually lead to better and more comprehensive treatments.
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