Tuesday, March 31, 2015

The Internet :Addiction and How Do You Overcome it ?

The internet is a part of daily life for pretty much everybody in the Western world. We use it at work; it’s on our smart phones in our pockets; it gives us directions in our cars, and, with the advent of affordable high speed internet, we’re getting these things incredibly fast.

There’s no doubt that the internet benefits us in many ways, but for a certain segment of the population, the internet might be fueling lurking addictions, and even creating new ones. Almost all of us have turned our computers on to check email, a bank statement or to find the name of a restaurant, only to find that we were still looking at our computer screens long after we’ve learned what we wanted to know. 

For most of us, it only happens once in awhile, and the time we lose really isn’t much different than sitting in front of the television watching a meaningless TV show for an hour. For others, these hours are adding up to real time and damaging lives in the process.

Social media addiction is probably the one that most of today’s youth is familiar with. Facebook now has over one billion active users, and with a social network that vast and expansive, it is hard to stay away from the media giant

Social Media Addiction

Most people have a natural desire to stay connected with other people, so it is easy to become addicted to social media sites. We like to see what others are doing, both instantly and in their general lives. However, the ease of access of these sites could be very detrimental to today’s youth. 

There are now 680 million mobile Facebook users, and 200 million Twitter users-- with more than half of those numbers belonging to people under the age of 30. While being so efficiently connected online, are the younger generations becoming more disconnected in real life? 

Online Gaming 

There are a lot of games on the internet that can be fun and educational-- teaching us how to better function in our everyday lives, such as games that help children learn how to read, or even games that teach us how to play a particular instrument. Many other games simply allow users to blow off some steam after a stressful day and have a lot fun – most likely for free.

However, some people take online gaming to an extreme level. While there’s no exact definition of video game addiction, most doctors say that anybody who plays compulsively for hours on end on a regular basis is likely an addict. 

Video game addiction may not sound dangerous, but it causes many people’s lives to suffer as they shirk off responsibilities, family and friends in order to spend more time playing video games. Individuals with severe video game addictions often lose their job because they come in late after a long night of playing video games because their performance suffers. Some may even take it to the extreme of playing these games during work. 

How to Avoid Online Addictions

Time management is the most important thing to remember. Facebook, Call of Duty, Xbox Online, and even online poker are okay in moderation. It is only natural that people want to relieve stress, and everyone has their own way of doing so. Whether it would be to chat online with some old friends, capture an enemy flag, or risk $50 for a chance to win $100, be sure to remember to practice all these activities safely and within time constraints.

Of course, not everybody that uses the internet has an addiction or develops an addiction. Even though online gaming has been claimed to be as addictive as gambling offline, there are a variety of games out there that are harmless, and some are even great educational resources.

Hopefully, in time, internet addicts will be able to easily get the help they need in a safe, nurturing environment. 

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