New phenomenon. Internet addiction can be used to describe some people who spend an excessive amount of time on line, are unable to limit the time they spend on the net, and have family or social problems as a result of the " addiction". Unlike drug or alcohol addiction, internet addiction may be a form of obsessive compulsive disorder in some people. In others, it could be a way of avoiding people/ socialization.
Addiction= disease. Yes. Check on the questions posted on this site. Many who post are concerned about their use of the internet.
It is. Internet addiction is the subject of new research. "behavioral addictions" altogether (e.g., gambling, pornography, sex...) is relatively new and remains the topic of some debate. But imo it is clear that behavioral addictions, including to the internet and/or its content can become severely damaging to people's lives. In my experience it is best dealt with by an addiction expert. Ask your md.
It's controversial. There is a concept of "process addictions"-gambling, sex, internet (which can be both sex;gambling and other things), compulsive dangerous activity (adrenaline "junkies), which some people feel are an addictive disorders while others think it is a variation of an obsessive-compulsive disorder. There is argument about the line between bad habits and disorders, but there is no doubt folks need help. Read more...