Addicted to the Internet Much?

Bailey Rummel

You’ve got mail. The majority of
people most likely read that like the
AOL person. This may indicate a potential
internet addiction. About 93%
of teens ages 12-17 go online regularly,
according to the Pew Research
Center. Even here in Hanover, students
spend even longer playing video
games than they spend at school in a
day.
Internet addiction is most common
in young teen males playing
video games such as Dungeons and
Dragons. Many teens are also over-involved
in different social media sites
— Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter
included. However, this problem now
has a solution in Bradford, Pennsylvania.
The Bradford Regional Medical
Center officially opened their 10 day
treatment program for internet addiction
on September 9th.
There is much debate as to whether
or not internet addiction is an actual
disorder, and was not added to
the DSM 5, the most recent book of
disorders, due to the lack of research.
Junior Barrett White had an opinion
on the issue, saying “I say it’s an
addiction, but not physically, so it’s
just that they need to get control over
their minds […] If this course is what
helps them get through it then I think
that’s ok.”
Senior Phillip Kurtz had a different
opinion, “It’s bogus. It’s all in your
head…You’ve just got to stop thinking
about it.”

More teens are suffering from so-called “internet addiction” everyday. Even in school students are faced with the temptation and even encouraged to give in. Credit: Emily Williams
More teens are suffering from so-called “internet addiction” everyday. Even in school
students are faced with the temptation and even encouraged to give in. Credit: Emily Williams

Keeping this in mind, is the program
necessary to help those who
are affected by this addiction or
should they be able to control the
urges themselves? This all depends on
whether or not it is found to be a true
disorder, for now it is all speculation.
Whether it’s a true addiction or
not, most agree that the course should
be offered in order to help those who
have this problem.
“I spend a good two to three hours
on YouTube a day,” junior Peter Moberg
reports. “Videogames included, I
play about five hours a day.”
The Bradford Regional Medical
Center, however, does not admit patients
into the program based on how
many hours one spends online, but on
how it affects his/her life when away
from the internet and if signs of withdrawal
are shown.
So what exactly might be the cause
of this addiction? When asked if he
believes society is pressuring teens
into becoming addicted to the internet,
senior Danny Dillon commented
saying “Yes, because everything
nowadays is computer generated and
computer technology…everything
that you want for a job involves computers.”
The BRMC believes that this addiction
is caused by poor self esteem
and the sense of self-fulfillment that a
gamer or internet surfer can find online.
In games, the player is strong and
capable, able to play the role of a hero
or become someone he/she wishes
they could be in the physical world.
It’s still up in the air as to whether
or not this is a true disorder, but
until it is officially published as one,
most health insurance will not cover
this addiction treatment program.
This means that only those who have
$14,000 to spare can participate.

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