Thursday, January 12, 2006


It’s official; at least in America. There is such a thing as onlineaholics or Internet addiction disorder as coined by psychotherapists who specialize on its treatment.

Mental health specialists estimate that 6 percent to 10 percent of the approximately 189 million Internet users in America have a dependency that can be as destructive as alcoholism and drug addiction. Therapists and rehabilitation centers treat Web addicts with the same methodical approaches, including 12-step programs which are used to treat chemical addictions.

According to a New York Times article, Hooked on the Web: Help is on the Way, “There is at least one inpatient program, at Proctor Hospital in Peoria, Ill., which admits patients to recover from obsessive computer use. Experts there said they see similar signs of withdrawal in those patients as in alcoholics or drug addicts, including profuse sweating, severe anxiety and paranoid symptoms.”

The report also mentions the prevalence of other technologies that contribute to behavioral addictions such as the BlackBerry wireless e-mail devices, sometimes called CrackBerries because they are considered so addictive; the Treo cellphone-organizer; and cellphone text messaging.

The hospital's treatment program places all its clients together for group therapy and other recovery work, whether the addiction is to cocaine or the computer, the report claims.


posted by Señor Enrique at 6:49 AM


Blogger Sidney said...

Profuse sweating, severe anxiety and paranoid ...
I am an internet addict! :-(

January 12, 2006 9:49 AM  

Blogger Señor Enrique said...

BUT do your hands shake even just by looking at a PC mouse or keyboard? :)

January 12, 2006 10:43 AM  

Blogger unknown particle said...

hindi pa naman ako ganyan salamat naman lol!!! pero .... pag hindi ako tumigil baka magkaganyan ako tsk tsk tsk!!! ... and my 8 year old daughter i think is following my footstep as an internet addict :( my goodness wag naman sana!!! right now ban daw sya sa shop ng sis ko ....btw u are really my lucky charm kasi ilang beses ko na triny ipublish ang blogger ko dun sa domain ko ayaw laging failed ... pero swerte talaga kahapon :) ... thanks and GOD BLESS!!!

January 12, 2006 1:48 PM  

Blogger Señor Enrique said...

Coincidence? Oh sige na nga! :) Try bumili ng Lotto ticket kung meron dyan...let's see if you'll win hehehe.

January 12, 2006 2:49 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I heard about this in CNN particularly in China, where hospitals there are alreday treating patients from being adicted to the net. I guess this is the new malady of our times...In South Korea, a 36 year-old guy died of heart failure after being stuck to the computer for 48 hours without rest...

January 12, 2006 3:38 PM  

Blogger Señor Enrique said...

Sad to admit, Major Tom, that a cousin's wife is afflicted with this malady since experiencing the "empty nest" syndrome. All she does is sit in front of her computer hours on end, and no one, even my cousin, could do anything about it. Her argument is that at least, she's not gambling his money away at the casinos. It's sad, indeed.

January 12, 2006 4:52 PM  

Blogger Abaniko said...

what about looking for the keyboard before a tv monitor? does this qualify as computer addiction too?

January 12, 2006 5:15 PM  

Blogger Señor Enrique said...

Merely bantering with Sydney, Niko.

January 12, 2006 6:28 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Marami nang Pinoy ang may ganyang afflictions dito. Isipin mo ba naman, wala ka gaano magawa dito. Plus lakas tama ng homesickness.

Yong karamihan nga ng kalaro ko sa Tennis di ko na napagkikita, yon pala, nakatutok sa computer.

Meron nga ako officemate, malimit pumapasok sa opisina, lalim ng mata, kasi kalimitan di na natutulog.

January 12, 2006 8:23 PM  

Blogger Señor Enrique said...

I can understand the homesickness that comes from having been uprooted from one's home, myepinoy, for I had experienced it myself. Perhaps, being online alleviates the loneliness and the next best thing (telephone rates are more prohibitive) to attain closeness with loved ones back home. But giving up tennis is another thing.

I guess, this problem is prevalent worldwide and not just in the U.S. There are indeed tough subjective issues attached that are unknown, except to the ones afflicted.

January 13, 2006 6:46 AM  

Blogger Ronald Allan said...

Nah. I don't believe I'm addicted to the internet. I just checked the symptoms of internet addiction on the internet and it doesn't even closely describe my condition.

Hahaha. :-)


January 13, 2006 8:21 AM  

Blogger Kiss My Mike said...

In my opinion, it's possible for people to be addicted without even accepting it. Just like any other addiction, the denial stage seems inevitable.

I think the key is to have a balanced life. (e.g. have other hobbies and activities)

January 13, 2006 9:49 PM  

Blogger niceheart said...

I know someone who gets cranky (points to hubby) :) when unable to connect to the internet. In fairness, I also get uneasy and irritated when he's been on the computer too long and I also want to use it.

January 13, 2006 11:00 PM  

Blogger Señor Enrique said...

Ron: That's a good one! :)

Mike: True. Balance is key to almost everything.

Niceheart: I must admit having the online connection makes me less physically homesick for New York. Only for the food :)

January 14, 2006 5:49 AM  

Blogger vonjobi said...

i'm trying to discipline myself. it's a good thing i also don't have too much time to blog. otherwise, i'd be online the whole day. i tend to just keep on clicking and opening new windows. hay naku... i wish i didn't have to work =)

January 17, 2006 7:57 PM  

Blogger Señor Enrique said...

The Internet offers wonderful sites that are so engaging, vonjobi.

The articles on New York Times Magazine, for example, although quite lengthy, are fine reads. Before I know it, I've been online longer than planned.

January 18, 2006 6:10 AM  

Blogger vonjobi said...

the new york times took up a lot of my time before i discovered blogging. now i need so much more time. i've subscribed to NYT's rss feeds but can't even keep up with those. the best way, sometimes, is really not to log on. but it's very hard. i actually shouldn't be online now =)

January 22, 2006 11:51 AM  

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