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Teenage Internet Addiction

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I have read several articles lately that outline teenage internet addiction.  Although my girls don't have the symptoms for it, my son does.  Do your kids fall into the category? 

  • Tolerance — Needing to play more and more in order to experience the same “rush”
  • Obsession — Spending most offline time thinking about past online experiences and planning for future online sessions
  • Frustration, anxiety, and/or irritability when not able to go online
  • Abandoning friends and other hobbies in order to focus on online activities
  • Continuing to spend time online even after negative repercussions (such as school problems, deteriorating relationships, and even health problems)

The following are among the specific signs that could indicate the presence of teen Internet addiction:

  • Most non-school hours are spent on the computer or playing video games
  • Falling asleep in school
  • Falling behind with assignments
  • Worsening grades
  • Lying about computer or video game use
  • Choosing to use the computer or play video games, rather than see friends
  • Dropping out of other social groups (clubs or sports)
  • Being irritable when not playing a video game or being on the computer

Physical symptoms associated with teen Internet addiction may include the following:

  • Carpal tunnel syndrome (associated with repetitive motions such as excessive keyboard use)
  • Insomnia
  • Poor nutrition (failing or refusing to eat in order to remain online)
  • Poor personal hygiene (again, neglecting this important issue in order to focus on online activities)
  • Headaches, back pain, and neck pain
  • Dry eyes and vision problems

by on Jan. 22, 2013 at 2:37 PM
Replies (11-20):
momof98and03
by on Jan. 25, 2013 at 10:07 AM
1 mom liked this

 My 14yr old daughter wanted to have her facebook account last year. I agreed and let her have it. But, I set few rules.


1) I will know her password.

2) I will be added as a friend in her friends list.

3) Facebook and email checking time is only on Fridays after school for 1hr. No other day in the week she is allowed to log onto facebook or her email. 

4) The laptop always needs to be in the living room and she is not allowed to take it into her bedroom.

5) No TV or Computer in her bedroom.

And I set some rules for myself, though I did not tell her and I dont see any need to tell her .

Since I am in her friends list on facebook so I get the updates too from her and some of her friends. I will let her have her freedom to comment on any of her friends status, photos etc.,  as a typical teenager usually does. I dont interfere in that. I remind myself that I am also there just to make sure about her safety and not to nag her. Also to gently correct her if she is going wrong. But so far, fortunately, she has never done anything like that. So, I never ever interfere in their conversations though I am aware of whats going on. I never comment or click the like even when she posts something. I just want to watch her from far and let her have her freedom.


Any other internet work which is related to school work, I sit with her or atleast try to be around while she is browsing. My dd is really not much into internet games. She likes to hang out with friends than play games on the net. She has got her school friends in the neighborhood so after school they hang out for sometime and if the weather is cold outside they love sitting and chatting, teasing each other, painting nails etc., or sometimes  playing table-tennis.






Troubleswife
by on Jan. 25, 2013 at 10:09 AM
I don't have this issue with my kids but my stepson is addicted. It's not impacting his grades I don't think but he's only in 3rd grade. I see this being a real issue in his teens.
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Troubleswife
by on Jan. 25, 2013 at 10:29 AM
I like these. I think I am making some changes in my home this weekend. :)

Quoting momof98and03:

 My 14yr old daughter wanted to have her facebook account last year. I agreed and let her have it. But, I set few rules.


1) I will know her password.

2) I will be added as a friend in her friends list.

3) Facebook and email checking time is only on Fridays after school for 1hr. No other day in the week she is allowed to log onto facebook or her email. 

4) The laptop always needs to be in the living room and she is not allowed to take it into her bedroom.

5) No TV or Computer in her bedroom.

And I set some rules for myself, though I did not tell her and I dont see any need to tell her .

Since I am in her friends list on facebook so I get the updates too from her and some of her friends. I will let her have her freedom to comment on any of her friends status, photos etc.,  as a typical teenager usually does. I dont interfere in that. I remind myself that I am also there just to make sure about her safety and not to nag her. Also to gently correct her if she is going wrong. But so far, fortunately, she has never done anything like that. So, I never ever interfere in their conversations though I am aware of whats going on. I never comment or click the like even when she posts something. I just want to watch her from far and let her have her freedom.


Any other internet work which is related to school work, I sit with her or atleast try to be around while she is browsing. My dd is really not much into internet games. She likes to hang out with friends than play games on the net. She has got her school friends in the neighborhood so after school they hang out for sometime and if the weather is cold outside they love sitting and chatting, teasing each other, painting nails etc., or sometimes  playing table-tennis.






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luckysevenwow
by Platinum Member on Jan. 25, 2013 at 10:37 AM

I think most people have some form of addiction to their gadgets. My feelings have always been so long as it doesn't interfer greatly with their day to day lives then I will just keep an eye on it. Once it does...well it becomes time to unplug.

LAHnTAH0812
by on Jan. 25, 2013 at 10:42 AM
i have a theory about this. growing up in the age of technology, people are becoming more and more accustomed to "right now" behavior. in turn the brain craves this instand gratification to the point where everything else is just too slow and tedious. it's almost adhd-like, or maybe just add.
the real world becomes way too slow for the brain and the only comfort one can find is in instant gratification via the internet, which is endless.
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annie2244
by Silver Member on Jan. 25, 2013 at 11:17 AM

Thanks for the info.

A rule for everyone, kids and grownups, of no more than 2 hrs of non-school/work related screen time is a good rule to prevent screen time from crowding out living an interesting and active life.

I need to be more vigilent about that rule for all of us. Electronic amusement, like carbs, sneaks it's way in and takes over.

StephanieSH
by on Jan. 25, 2013 at 11:32 AM

I teach 8th and 10th grade and the students are definitely addicted to their cell phones.  My biggest complaint about the internet age is that it has made the kids incredibly lazy.  They don't think they actually have to know anything because they can just "look it up on their phones". It's frustrating because school is more than just learning facts. It's learning critical thinking skills.  We were  going over how the U.S. acquired all its territory (Manifest Destiny) and one student said "I fail to see how this information will ever help me in life" while another one said that the Pacific Ocean is on both sides of the country.  I told them that when they are in a job interview and they ask them if they would be willing to travel to, let's say, Colorado for business, they aren't going to be able to say "wait, let me look that up on my phone to see where it is".

Christine9576
by on Jan. 25, 2013 at 12:19 PM
My teen certainly is not...however I see some of those examples in myself. I am internet addicted.
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Threes.Company
by on Jan. 25, 2013 at 1:54 PM

I don't think this is something restricted to teenagers.  In fact, I think it is something we need to monitor closely in ourselves and even younger children.  Our kids are growing up in a technical age, and I know just how addicting the computer and my iPhone and my Kindle can really be.  I have found that I even need to set restrictions and boundaries for myself or I can easily waste 3-4 hours using technological devices without realizing it.  One example:  I recently removed the FB app from my phone, because I found that I became obsessive about following what everyone else was doing thorughout the day and also feeling like I needed to constant be updating about what I was doing.  It just got crazy, so quickly. 

Now I am an adult and have more of a sense of self-awareness than a child does.  So I can monitor myself and step away from it when I realize it is getting out of control.  But my kids...  They don't have that same ability to monitor themselves.  My kids are not teens (sorry, saw this on the main CM page), they are 5, 4 and 3.  But we have an iPad, a Nexus 7 and two iPhones in our house.  Plus we have two laptops.  The kids are constantly wanting to play games and such.  They aren't using the internet for social media yet and a lot of what they are doing is educational, but I can already see them being totally sucked into these devices to a point that they will sit there for hours and hours (if you let them), playing games and such.  It's kind of scary, actually.  I literally set timers to make sure I am watching how long they're using these things. 

The symptoms mentioned are extreme if you have all of them at once.  But I have definitely had a couple of those.  I do think I am somewhat addicted to the internet, though not to the point that it has affected my social life or anything.  I mean, I work out 5-6 days a week, I take my kids to and from school activities throughout the day, I have friends I get together with, DH and I go out together.  So, I am not sitting in a room, avoiding my life all day while on the internet.  But at the same time, I do find myself experiencing some symptoms as mentioned in the OP, to some degree.

I think it's something that we all need to be aware of in ourselves and our kids.  And we need to take action and make sure that we are not allowing our addiction/obsession with technology to hold us back in life.

KittyTussand
by on Jan. 25, 2013 at 3:25 PM

that discribes my hubby. but i had alreayd known he was adducted this confirms it!

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