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Internet addiction is increasing at a rapid rate worldwide. Smartphones, tablets and laptops hooked up to the internet have found their way into much of our daily lives at work, school and at home. The net provides a multitude of communication, learning, entertainment and business opportunities. However, there are negative aspects of being connected at all times as well.
Millions of people suffer from internet addiction around the world, which is negatively affecting their lives. Without a doubt, the raised profile of social media and other forms of internet usage, including streaming, has increased the number of people that have actively sought out internet addiction treatment.
Essentially, Internet addiction is the compulsive overuse of the internet. Just go to any restaurant or cafe these days, and you can see for yourself where people are with a group of friends, and not a single one is talking to another – instead, they are all seated at a table together pursuing individual activities via the internet.
Internet games and social media outlets are major aspects of internet addiction.
Just like other behavioural or process addictions (such as gambling and sex), an internet addict’s reward centre of the brain lights up just at the thought of being online. Often this is associated with a feeling of being connected. When a person loses the ability to connect to others in real life, or when internet usage is negatively disrupting other parts of their life such as work, school or relationships, this is considered internet addiction.
Because the internet is so intertwined with modern life, it is difficult to know when your internet usage has become problematic. Some indicators include losing sleep and keeping irregular hours solely because of internet use, preferring to spend time online rather than with the people we care about as well as fantasising about the next time you can log on.
Internet addiction can cause many negative effects on a person’s life, including:
Internet and gaming addiction can be treated successfully through both inpatient addiction treatment as well as outpatient. Which one is more effective for the addict largely depends on each person’s situation and the severity of their addiction. Outpatient treatment requires the addicted person to attend counselling sessions several times per week as they still maintain their day-to-day obligations. This is normally reserved for those whose internet addiction is not yet too severe. However, in more severe cases – or when an addict simply wants to focus completely on addiction recovery, inpatient addiction treatment is recommended. In these cases, the addict is required to live at the residential rehab centre while receiving treatment.
Firstly, because internet addiction is so ingrained in daily life, many internet addicts find it incredibly beneficial to be removed from ‘regular’ life. Staying at a treatment centre for a period of time will allow them to completely unplug from the internet and technology. This makes it easier to deal with urges and cravings to use the internet, as they are in a new environment where the internet is simply not accessible.
Some of the other benefits of residential rehab include:
Unlike with Alcohol and Other Drugs, complete abstinence from internet use is not realistic in today’s modern world – which is why The Cabin uses a unique treatment method, Changing pathways, created specifically to treat those addictions in which abstinence is not possible.
Using a combination of cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT), 12 Steps and mindfulness therapy our treatment programme teaches clients the coping skills and tools necessary to develop healthy internet usage patterns.
Many addiction centres do not have experience with these types of addiction, but the Western-trained counsellors we have at The Cabin are highly trained and knowledgable in these areas and have vast experience in treating all types of behavioural addictions, including internet and gaming addiction. Our treatment programme boasts a high completion rate and is offered at a fraction of the cost of similar or lesser luxury rehab centres in the West.
There is no better time than now to begin your internet or gaming addiction treatment. The sooner an addiction is treated, the better the chances are for a successful and long-lasting recovery. If you are unsure whether your internet usage habits are healthy or not, or if you’ve found that you simply cannot stop gaming or using the internet, please contact us today for a free assessment.